Welcome to the black hole that is Jackson Hole, where packages come to die.
In 2017, 6.1 billion items (4.56% of all mail) were marked “undeliverable as addressed” and either returned to sender, sent to the USPS dead letter office in Atlanta, Georgia, or destroyed. That’s down from 6.8 billion in 2016.
The cost to the Postal Service to process undeliverable mail is $1.3 billion a year — part of the reason the U.S. Postal Service loses around $8 billion to $10 billion a year. This past spring, USPS reported a net loss of $2.5 billion in the second quarter of 2023 alone.
U.S. Postal Service announced in late December 2019 it planned to buy 186,000 vehicles at a cost of more than $6 billion to update an aging fleet. Delivery of those vehicles is expected to finally happen next year.
None of them will be coming to Jackson.
As one might imagine, lack of home delivery has put an enormous strain on Postal Service frontline resources. There are never enough employees to properly run area post offices. Branches in Kelly and Wilson sometimes operate just two hours a day or don’t open at all if no one shows up to work.
The town of Jackson has two post offices, an older one on West Pearl Street and a newer one on Maple Way. Both are overrun with customers. Trash overflows and piles up on the floor. Lines are long, tempers are short — and that’s just the beginning of what’s wrong with mail in Jackson Hole.