Jackson lies at the end of the great valley known as Jackson Hole, which runs the length of the Teton Mountain Range. At the centre of Jackson Hole is the Grand Teton National Park, with Yellowstone National Park just further north. The town is the main gateway to both national parks.
Tourism is the most important industry in the area, where a unique blend of fashionable resort and the Old West sees designer boutiques and art galleries line the cowboy-style boardwalks. Spread across the valley are a sprinkling of million-dollar houses between the remaining cattle ranches, which offer guest facilities to supplement their farming income. During the summer, vacationers swarm the shopping malls and fancy restaurants, and the town square becomes the stage for a performed shoot-out every evening.
Jackson Hole is primarily a winter and summer playground for outdoor enthusiasts, with hiking, mountaineering, biking, and kayaking in summer. In winter it becomes a premier ski destination, home to two of the state's best ski areas. Jackson Hole Mountain Resort has a massive vertical drop and skiing suitable for extremists, while Snow King Resort offers family-orientated skiing and snowboarding.