The Tetons

The Tetons are unique mountains, the ‘youngest’ among the mountain ranges of North America, still rising up from the Teton fault line, jolted into life by earthquakes, sculpted by glaciers. Grand Teton National Park is a view into what the land might have looked like hundreds of years ago, compromised by the need to accommodate thousands of people who flock there to see the wildlife and view the mountains.

Wandering down roads less traveled and staying late into the evening, we were able to experience the stillness, the views, and sense the mountains presence as early settlers to the area might have. But ultimately, when there was a wild life “happening”, such as a grizzly with her cubs, or the Rocky Mountain elk cow who just gave birth, we were among the dozens of people wanting to glimpse these beautiful animals going about their business, living in one of the last places they call home.

The pronghorns were my favorites, they are beautiful to watch. Unique to North America, and the  fastest mammal in North America, they are second only to the cheetah in the world for speed. They are dwindling in numbers due to fences and development of ranch lands. Their migration routes are blocked and often dangerous. They eluded my camera, though we saw many. I got pictures of them from afar, and saw them a bit closer up when we were in the valley of the Bitterroot Mountains.

Enjoy the pictures. If you have been there perhaps they will bring found memories. If you haven’t maybe they will inspire you to go. There are many books written by those who have explored the trails, the history and lived in the Tetons. If you plan to go I encourage you to read a few.  Ours was the experience of two folks, and a little dog, who tooled around the park, spending two long days, but too short a time, among these amazing mountains and the surrounding lands. We were fortunate to see some of the wild life who call the mountain slopes and sagebrush lands sheltered by the mountains, home.

The three linked pages below show pictures of a few of the “road side attractions” we enjoyed on our trip to and from the Tetons.

Roadside attraction #1 – Cataldo Mission

Roadside attraction #2 – Dick and Jane’s Spot, Ellensburg

Roadside attraction #3 – Sacajawea Center

The Hobbit House

(rolling your cursor over the bottom edge a photo will bring up a caption, if there is one. Clicking on any photo will show it larger in a slide show, a better way to view)

There are many signs in the park of the early homesteaders and ranchers who lived in the area before it was set aside as a park. One such building is a small chapel over looking Jackson Lake. Called both the Chapel of Transfiguration and the Chapel of the Sacred Heart, after the tragedies of September 11, 2001, a family donated money needed to restore this little chapel in the memory of those who lost their lives. Weekly services are held in the summer and it is a popular place for people to get married in the park. We found it to be a very cool, quiet place late on a hot day.

Below is a sampler of the many wildflowers we saw both in the park, in Teton Valley Idaho, or along the way.

2 thoughts on “The Tetons

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