Kelly Wyoming

Cowboys TetonsKelly Wyoming is in Grand Teton National Park and borders on the National Elk Refuge witch in winter is home to thousands of elk and a heard of bison. The views of the east side of the Tetons are unsurpased from any other town in the region. In summer bison roam all over the area.

Kelly Wyoming was originally called Gros Ventre. It was later changed to Kelly to honor Bill Kelly,  a local sawmill owner and rancher.  In 1925 fifty million tons of rock, soil, and other debris, including some ancient trees, slid off Sheep Mountain and dammed the Gros Ventre River and formed Slide Lake.

In 1927, the upper part of the dam gave way and the result was catastrophic.  Kelly residents had only a few minutes to get to higher ground and watch the fifteen foot wall of water sweep their town away, leaving only the church and the schoolhouse behind. Six people lost their lives in the flood.

The slide is still a pretty amazing site as is the river bottom that to this day is strewn with giant boulders that first slid out of the mountain only to be washed down river by the flood of the broken dam.

E. Paul Conine later interivewed the survivors and it is a facinating read, I'd like to thank Dave Conine for permission to publsh his father's copyrighted history of the event.  The Gros Ventre Slide by E. Paul Conine

 

Photos taken within 5 miles of Kelly Wyoming

wolves, death canyon, grand teton national park

Big Buck

Moose portraitbison in dandylions

bison Grand Tetonsbison crossing gros ventre river in grand teton national park

rafting gros ventre river bruce hayes

slide lake

 

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