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Title: Grand Teton National Park, Wyoming (1952)
Author: Anonymous
Language: English
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Copyright Status: Not copyrighted in the United States. If you live elsewhere check the laws of your country before downloading this ebook. See comments about copyright issues at end of book.

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                              Grand Teton
                            _National Park_

    [Illustration: U. S. DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR • March 3, 1849]

                     Oscar L. Chapman, _Secretary_

                         NATIONAL PARK SERVICE
                      Conrad L. Wirth, _Director_


This park, mostly wilderness, is the home of many wild animals, which
roam it unmolested. Though they may seem tame, they are not! Some have
been known to attack visitors without apparent provocation and have
caused serious injury. Watch them at a safe distance; when driving, do
not stop unless you can pull off the road; and stay in your car. For
your safety, we must enforce the regulation which prohibits feeding or
molesting these wild animals. Campers, and those who frequent roads and
trails on foot, should exercise constant care to avoid attacks and

                           _Historic Events_

  1807-8    Discovery of the Tetons by John Colter.
  1811      The West-bound Astorians crossed Teton Pass.
  1818      Canadian fur traders under Donald McKenzie ascended Snake
            River to its headwaters.
  1824      American trappers under Jedediah Smith reached Jackson Hole.
  1825-40   Zenith of the fur trade in Jackson Hole and the Rocky
            Mountain Region.
  1829      William Sublette named “Jackson’s Hole” after his partner
            in the fur trade, David E. Jackson.
  1832      Rendezvous of fur trappers in Pierre’s Hole. Battle of
            Pierre’s Hole.
  1842      Alleged attempt to climb the Grand Teton by Michaud.
  1860      Jim Bridger guided Capt. W. F. Raynolds’ expedition through
            Teton country.
  1872      Disputed ascent of Grand Teton by Langford and Stevenson.
            William H. Jackson, with Hayden geological survey party,
            took first photographs of the Tetons.
  1877      Hayden survey party of Orestes St. John made geological
            studies in the Tetons.
  1879      Thomas Moran painted the Teton Range.
  1884      The first settlers entered Jackson Hole.
  1897      Teton Forest Reserve established.
  1898      The Owen Spalding party made an ascent of the Grand Teton.
  1929      Grand Teton National Park established and dedicated.
  1943      Jackson Hole National Monument established.
  1950      Grand Teton National Park enlarged by the addition of most
            of Jackson Hole National Monument.

                              Grand Teton
                             NATIONAL PARK

Grand Teton National Park includes the most scenic portion of the
majestic Teton Mountain Range and the northern portion of Jackson Hole,
a high mountain valley famous for its associations with early western
history. Through congressional action in 1950 the greater portion of the
former Jackson Hole National Monument was added to the park. The
portions not so added were included in the National Elk Refuge and the
Teton National Forest. The enlarged park contains approximately 300,000
acres of Federal lands.

The park is a part of the National Park System owned by the people of
the United States and administered for them by the National Park Service
of the Department of the Interior.

The great array of peaks which constitute the scenic climax of Grand
Teton National Park is one of the noblest in the world. Southwest of
Jenny Lake, which is in the central portion of the park, is a
culminating group of lofty peaks whose dominating feature is the Grand
Teton. Much of the mountainous area of the park is above timber line;
the Grand Teton rises to 13,766 feet and towers more than 7,000 feet
above the floor of Jackson Hole.

The Snake River, flowing south from Yellowstone National Park, widens
into Jackson Lake, 14 miles long. Below the lake, the swift river
bisects and cuts ever deeper into the glacial outwash plain of the Ice
Age. North of this upland valley lie the high plateaus of Yellowstone
National Park; on the east and south are the Mount Leidy highlands and
the Gros Ventre Mountains. Emma Matilda and Two Ocean, two lovely
mountain lakes, lie north of the Snake and its tributary, Buffalo Fork.

Together the Teton Mountains and Jackson Hole form a landscape of
matchless grandeur and majesty unlike any other in America.

                         History of the Region

The Tetons are remarkably rich in historic traditions. The Grand Teton
itself has been referred to by an eminent historian as “the most noted
historic summit of the West.”

Up to 1800, Indians held undisputed sway over the country dominated by
the Three Tetons. Jackson Hole was literally a happy hunting ground,
and, while the severe winters precluded permanent habitation, during the
milder seasons, bands of Indians frequently came across the passes into
the basins on warring or hunting expeditions.

The Tetons probably first became known to white men in 1807-8, when the
intrepid John Colter, originally a member of the Lewis and Clark
Expedition, explored the region for the fur trader, Manuel Lisa. On his
return trip he became the discoverer of the geyser and hot-spring area
of what is now Yellowstone National Park.

The Astorians, the first Americans to go overland after Lewis and Clark,
passed through Jackson Hole in 1811 and crossed the Tetons on their way
to the mouth of the Columbia.

The decades that followed are frequently referred to as the “Fur Trade
Era,” for then Jackson Hole was a veritable crossroads of the Rocky
Mountain fur trade and the scene of intensive exploration and trapping
activities by both British and American fur interests. Explorations by
such “mountain men” as Robert Stuart, Jedediah Smith, Jim Bridger, and
Kit Carson helped to insure the acquisition of “Oregon Territory” for
the United States.

The picturesque name of “Jackson Hole” for this high mountain valley
dates back to 1829, when Capt. William Sublette named it for his fellow
trapper and partner, David E. Jackson, when he found him in camp on the
shore of “Jackson’s Lake” after the Wind River rendezvous of 1829.

The Rocky Mountain fur trade declined sharply after 1839, and during the
period of the great migrations to Oregon, California, and Utah in the
1840’s and 1850’s via South Pass, the Jackson Hole country was largely
deserted. There were brief flurries of interest in 1860, when Jim
Bridger guided the Raynolds’ expedition through Jackson Hole, and in
1863, when Montana prospectors searched the gravel bars of Snake River
for gold.

In the period from 1872 to 1880 several Government expeditions explored
the valley and named most of the geological features of the surrounding
country. Thomas Moran, the famous artist, and William H. Jackson, the
“Pioneer Photographer,” painted and photographed the Tetons during some
of these expeditions.

The first settlers came to Jackson Hole in 1884, and began building
homes at what later became the villages of Jackson, Moran, and Wilson.
During these days of early settlement Jackson Hole acquired a reputation
as the hideout of many of the outlaws of the West. No doubt some did use
this secluded valley as a hideaway, but undoubtedly these stories were
exaggerated, as Jackson Hole sometimes is confused with the “Hole in the
Wall” and other known sanctuaries of Wyoming “bad men.”

                       Sculpture of the Landscape

Geologists regard the Teton Range as one of the most impressive known
ranges of the “fault block” type. Ages ago, along a great break in the
earth’s crust (the “Teton Fault”) a gigantic block was uplifted and
given a westward slant. Long-continued sculpturing of this tilted fault
block by many natural agencies—frost, streams, avalanches of rock and
snow, and glaciers—has produced the notable scenic features of the Teton
Range as we now see it.

    [Illustration:                         —UNION PACIFIC RAILROAD PHOTO
                   _Mount Teewinot as seen from the Jenny Lake Museum._]

Streams on the east slope, having steeper gradients and therefore more
rapid flow than the other streams, cut spectacular canyons on this side
of the range. As these streams have worked back into the giant block,
they have caused the divide to migrate westward, diverting more and more
drainage to the east and leaving the great peaks standing like monuments
on the ever-widening east slope.

East of the Teton Fault, in the Jackson Hole area, another great earth
block lies deeply buried beneath debris brought down into the basin by
mountain streams and glaciers. Changes wrought by the great glaciers of
the Ice Age have given the region much of its distinctive character.
Glacial erosion is strikingly evident in the sharply chiselled peaks,
the U-shaped canyons and the profound basins (“cirques”) at their heads,
and the numerous little alpine tarns (lakelets occupying ice-gouged
basins). The irregular wooded ridges of Jackson Hole, on the other hand,
are due to glacial deposition, being composed of bouldery debris heaped
up by the ice. Some of these moraines form the dams which enclose the
beautiful lakes at the foot of the Teton Range—Phelps, Taggart, Bradley,
Jenny, Leigh, and Jackson Lakes. The broad terraced plains of Jackson
Hole are for the most part great sheets of gravel spread out on the
valley floor by the glacial streams of the Ice Age.

Small glaciers still found among the Teton Peaks are now believed to be
youthful ice bodies only a few thousand years old, rather than the
dwindling remnants of great glaciers of the Ice Age, as was formerly

A fuller account of the geologic features is given on the reverse side
of the topographic map of Grand Teton National Park, for sale at the


The Jackson Hole country, long famous for its big game, is the home of
one of the world’s largest elk herds. The elk, or wapiti, have been the
most important big-game animals in Jackson Hole since the occupancy of
white men. In the spring they leave the low country of the park and the
National Elk Refuge, near the town of Jackson, and move toward the
highlands surrounding the valley. When snowfall comes in the high
country the elk return to the refuge, which is administered by the Fish
and Wildlife Service of the Department of the Interior.

Shiras moose, the most commonly seen big game animal, is frequently
observed in the smaller ponds and marshy meadows. The moose, largest
member of the deer family, is not as wary as other deer. Mule deer are
increasing in the park and environs, and, though quite shy, are often
seen along the trails by hikers and horseback riders.

Small herds of bighorn, or Rocky Mountain sheep, range in isolated
sections of the park, and bears may be found in the mountains and

Beavers, martens, minks, weasels, coyotes, marmots, conies, and rabbits
inhabit the park, and ground squirrels and chipmunks are numerous. More
than 100 species of birds may be identified by the careful observer.

                            Trees and Plants

In several respects the flora of the Tetons is unique. The high
mountains have constituted a plant-migration barrier which many forms
could not cross; hence the range limit of a number of species is found
here. Representatives from north, south, east, and west are in the
region, this being the limit, in many instances, of their distribution.
There are a number of plants typical of the central Rockies and a few
known only to this range. Four life zones are recognized within the
park, all occurring within a distance of less than 15 miles.

    [Illustration: _A part of the Jackson Hole Elk herd._]

The flowering period begins in the park as soon as the ridges and flats
are free of snow in May, and it continues until about August 15 in the
Arctic-Alpine Zone. Hence, plants of at least one zone and usually of
several may be seen blooming at any time in the spring or summer.

The evergreen trees (of which the lodgepole pine, limber pine, whitebark
pine, Engelmann spruce, and alpine fir are most common) form an
appropriate frame for the majestic Teton peaks and are reflected in the
lakes which they encircle.

                        The Interpretive Program

The park museum is located at Jenny Lake, the focal point for all
naturalist activities. In it are housed exhibits pertaining to history,
geology, fauna, and flora of the Teton-Jackson Hole country. The
collection devoted to mountaineering is in many respects unique.
Adjacent to the museum is an open-air amphitheater, where campfire talks
on geology, wildlife, and other subjects relating to the park are given
every evening during the summer season. Nature walks, auto caravans, and
all-day hikes are conducted by members of the naturalist division.

An information desk is maintained at the museum, and rangers are there
at all hours of the day to answer inquiries. These services are
available during the summer season only, but information may be obtained
at park headquarters throughout the year.

The naturalists and rangers are always glad to assist visitors in making
the most of their visit to the park.

    [Illustration:                 REVISED JANUARY 1951 N. P. G. T. 7021
                                     GRAND TETON NATIONAL PARK, WYOMING]

               TRAIL DISTANCE                MILES

       AROUND JENNY LAKE                         7.2
       AROUND STRING LAKE                        4.0
       AROUND LEIGH LAKE                         7.5
       STRING LAKE                               3.0
       LEIGH LAKE                                4.0
       HIDDEN FALLS by trail;                    2.7
       by boat 1.2 and trail 0.5
       FORKS OF CASCADE CANYON                   6.5
       LAKE SOLITUDE                             9.4
       TETON GLACIER                             7.6
       TAGGART LAKE                              2.0
       BRADLEY LAKE                              3.5
       PHELPS LAKE AND DEATH CANYON              6.0

    LAKES      MAX. DEPTH        AREA

  JACKSON         400 Feet    25,540 Acres
  LEIGH           250          1,229
  JENNY           226          1,325
  BRADLEY          93             72
  TAGGART          31            163
  PHELPS          158            525

    [Illustration:                                  —COPYRIGHT, CRANDALL
                              _Church of the Transfiguration at Moose._]

                      What To Do While in the Park

There are numerous recreational activities in which the visitor may
participate, and the park roads afford many vantage points from which to
enjoy the magnificence of the Teton Range and the valley of Jackson
Hole. Side roads lead to important points of interest, such as the Snake
River, Two Ocean Lake, Signal Mountain, Hedrick’s Point, Saw Mill Ponds,
Gros Ventre Slide, and many others.


Although the trail system of Grand Teton National Park is not completed,
numerous trails and side roads are maintained for the visitor.
Additional trails are planned, and existing secondary trails in the
newly acquired portions of the park will be developed. The more than 130
miles of trails that now exist in the park are described below.

_The Lakes Trail_ runs parallel to the mountains, following closely the
base of the range and skirting the shore of each large body of water
from Leigh Lake at the north to Phelps Lake at the south. Trails
completely encircle Leigh, String, and Jenny Lakes.

_The Teton Glacier Trail_ extends up the east slope of the Grand Teton
to Surprise and Amphitheater Lakes, unfolding matchless panoramas of the
surrounding country. Amphitheater Lake is the starting point for the
climb to the Teton Glacier.

_The Indian Paintbrush Canyon Trail_ starts near the outlet of Leigh
Lake and follows up the bottom of the Indian Paintbrush Canyon to
connect with the Cascade Canyon Trail by way of Lake Solitude, near the
head of the north fork of Cascade Canyon.

_The Cascade Canyon Trail_ passes through a chasm whose walls rise sheer
on either side for thousands of feet. By this trail one penetrates into
the deepest recesses of the Tetons, skirting the bases of several tall
peaks. The north fork of Cascade Canyon Trail leads to Lake Solitude and
the south fork leads to the Limestone Wall and Alaska Basin.

_The Death Canyon Trail_ traverses the full length of a canyon which in
its lower portion is of profound depth and grandeur, as awesome as its
name. It emerges above into broad sunny meadows. The trail up the north
fork of Death Canyon leads to Alaska Basin and a junction with the trail
from the south fork of Cascade Canyon. The former trail along the east
face of the wall has been destroyed by rock slides and IS NO LONGER SAFE

While trails are traversable during the greater part of the summer, some
of them may be blocked by snow at the beginning of the season. Those
visitors expecting to use the trails early in the summer should inquire
at park headquarters or at the Jenny Lake Museum for information
regarding their condition.

    [Illustration: _The Jenny Lake Museum—Public Information Center._]

                           Mountain Climbing

Persons inexperienced in mountain climbing are requested to obtain the
services of a mountain-climbing guide, or attempt climbs only when
accompanied by experienced climbers. Since 1931, authorized
non-Government guide service has been available in the park. In view of
the difficulties one encounters on the Teton peaks and the hazards they
present, all prospective climbers are urged to make use of the guide
service. If venturing out unguided, climbers should consult rangers or
guides for full information relating to routes and equipment. Failure to
heed this caution has led to accidents and even fatalities. Climbing
parties are required, under all circumstances, to report at either park
headquarters or Jenny Lake Museum before and after each expedition,
whether guided or unguided. CLIMBING ALONE, WITHOUT A COMPANION, IS NOT

The climbing season varies with the weather and the amount of snow in
the range; it is at its best during July, August, and early September.
In most cases it is advisable to allow 2 days for an ascent of Grand
Teton, Mount Moran, or Mount Owen and 1 day for other major peaks. Jenny
Lake Campground is the logical outfitting point for most expeditions.
The majority of ascents require ice axes, rope, and hobbed boots or
climbing shoes. Guided parties may arrange to rent equipment from the


Grand Teton National Park offers good opportunities for fishing. Fish
may be taken with artificial lure during most of the summer and autumn.
The lake or mackinaw trout in Jackson and Jenny Lakes can best be caught
with heavy tackle by means of trolling.

The park waters are stocked through the cooperation of the United States
Fish and Wildlife Service and the Game and Fish Department of Wyoming.


Boats are available on Jackson and Jenny Lakes. Speed launches are
provided for scenic trips on these lakes. Rowboats, and boats with
outboard motors, may be rented for fishing or for pleasure trips.

Persons bringing their own boats are required to register them with the
National Park Service and to obtain a permit before placing them On the
waters of the park.

                         How To Reach the Park

_By Automobile_—Grand Teton National Park may be reached from the east
via United States Highway Nos. 287 and 26 by way of Togwotee Pass over
the Wind River Range; from the south over United States Highways Nos.
187 and 189 using the Hoback Canyon route; from the southwest via the
Grand Canyon of the Snake River or United States Highway No. 89 or from
the west over Teton Pass using Wyoming Highway No. 22 and Idaho Highway
No. 33 from the junction with United States Highway No. 191 near Sugar
City, Idaho. All of the above-named highways are kept open throughout
the year.

Entrance to the region from the north is through Yellowstone National
Park, via its south entrance, using United States Highway No. 89 along
the Snake River and Jackson Lake shore to its junction with United
States Highways Nos. 187, 287, and 26 near Moran, Wyo., in Jackson Hole.
This highway to Yellowstone National Park is not kept open during the
winter months and generally is not opened in the spring until the last
week in May.

_By Railroad and Bus_—The nearest rail terminal is at Victor, Idaho, on
the Union Pacific Railroad. Regular bus service is maintained between
Victor and the park by the Grand Teton Lodge & Transportation Co. during
the summer months. The park may be reached from the south by buses of
the Burlington Transportation Co. from Rock Springs, also on the Union
Pacific, to Jackson, Wyo., thence by Grand Teton Lodge & Transportation
Co. to Jenny Lake and Moran. Write to Grand Teton Lodge & Transportation
Co., Moran, Wyo., for rates and schedules.

    [Illustration:                                  —COPYRIGHT, CRANDALL
                              _Grand Teton from a high mountain slope._]

_By Airplane_—During the summer, Western Air Lines provides passenger,
mail, and express service to Grand Teton National Park at an airport
located about 9 miles north of Jackson, Wyo., and 8 miles south of park
headquarters. Connections are made at Salt Lake City with United Air
Lines main transcontinental line, and at Butte, Helena, and Great Falls,
Mont., with Northwest Airlines.

    [Illustration: _View of Mount Moran from the east shore of Leigh

                            The Park Season

The season extends from June 15 to September 15. During that time a full
schedule of activities is carried on by the naturalist staff of the park
and food and lodging are available in or near the park. During the
remainder of the year accommodations are limited chiefly to those
provided in the town of Jackson, a few miles south of the park.

The four major highways leading to the park are kept open during the
winter months and visitors can enjoy the scenic wonders of the Teton
Range in its winter setting and participate in the winter sports for
which Jackson Hole is famous.

                              What to Wear

Even during the summer months persons planning to camp in the park
should provide themselves with camping equipment suitable for freezing
temperatures. For trips into the mountains, visitors are advised to wear
good hiking shoes and to take clothing suitable for extreme changes of
temperature. Sudden showers or snowstorms often occur, especially during
June and early July.

               Accommodations and Miscellaneous Services

Overnight accommodations are supplied by the several ranches, dude
ranches, and lodges in the park and at the town of Jackson. Meals are
served at most of these establishments. A complete list of
accommodations may be obtained by writing to the superintendent of the

Well-developed campgrounds are available at Jenny, String, and Jackson
Lakes. These campgrounds are supplied with running water, sanitary
facilities, cooking grates, and tables.

There are also camping sites away from the main campgrounds suitable for
overnight stops for hikers or pack outfits. Large organized groups are
advised to make advance arrangements for camp sites before coming to the

The supply of firewood for campfires is very limited and campers should
bring kerosene or gasoline stoves for cooking in the campgrounds.
Campfire permits are required for fires to be built in any place other
than the regularly designated campgrounds.

_Guide Service_—At Jenny Lake there is an authorized official
mountain-climbing guide who will guide climbing parties to the summits
of the major peaks. He gives instructions in mountain climbing at
frequent intervals during the climbing season.

Information concerning rates for all climbs may be obtained from the
superintendent of the park or from the mountain-climbing guide.

Winter and early spring skiing is possible in the park, and skiing
guides, ski equipment, and instructions in skiing are available at
Jackson, Wyo.

_Saddle Horses_—The park saddle horse concessioner maintains an
excellent string of saddle and pack horses, with good equipment for
short or long trips. Saddle horses may be rented without guides, but
only to ride over well-defined trails in designated areas.

_Photographs_—Up-to-date picture shops are maintained at Jenny Lake and
Moran. Photographs of the surrounding country, enlargements, paintings,
moving pictures, and souvenir post cards are sold. Laboratories are
maintained for developing, printing, and enlarging.

The latest rates for these services, approved by the Director of the
National Park Service, are on file with the superintendent and the park


The superintendent is the representative of the National Park Service in
immediate charge of the park, with offices at park headquarters. All
communications regarding the park should be addressed to the
Superintendent, Grand Teton National Park, Moose, Wyo.

Rangers and ranger naturalists are stationed at various locations in the
park to assist in the protection of the area and to help visitors to
enjoy the park and understand its natural phenomena.

                       Help Us Protect This Park

National parks are established “to conserve the scenery and the natural
and historic objects and the wildlife therein and to provide for the
enjoyment of the same in such manner and by such means as will leave
them unimpaired for the enjoyment of future generations.”

Please cooperate with us in maintaining and protecting this park. The
following observations are made for your guidance:

_Preservation of Natural Features and Public Buildings_—Trees, flowers,
vegetation, rocks, minerals, animals, or birds may not be disturbed,
injured, or destroyed, and buildings, signs, or equipment may not be
defaced or destroyed. No material of any kind may be taken from the park
without a written permit from the superintendent.

_Bears and Deer_—Feeding, touching, teasing, or molesting bears and deer
is prohibited. Any close approach to them is dangerous.

_Camping_—Camps should be kept clean, rubbish and garbage burned, and
refuse placed in cans provided for this purpose. CAMPFIRE PERMITS ARE
REQUIRED for building campfires in areas outside designated campgrounds.

_Fires_—Be careful with fires at all times. Make sure your campfire is
completely out before leaving it. Smoking and the building of fires may
be prohibited when hazard makes such action necessary. ALL KINDS OF

_Fishing_—Fishing regulations are subject to change from year to year
and the limit for a day’s catch may vary. Learn the limit and the
regulations before starting to fish in any of the park waters. Fishing
in any way other than with hook and line, and with the rod or line held
in hand, is prohibited. A STATE FISHING LICENSE IS REQUIRED.

_Hunting_—Public hunting within the park boundaries is not permitted and
the use of firearms while in the park is prohibited except upon written
orders or permission from the superintendent.

_Boating_—Boating permits, which are required for boats placed on the
waters of the park may be obtained at any ranger station.

_Mountain Climbing_—All mountain climbers must register at the ranger
stations before starting to ascend any peak and must report their return
from each climbing expedition. SOLO CLIMBS ARE NOT PERMITTED.

_Automobiles_—Drive carefully at all times. Speed limits are posted;
these vary for different sections of the park. All accidents should be
reported at the nearest ranger station. Fees for automobiles, trailers,
and motorcycles are collected at the park entrances. All fees are
deposited in the United States Treasury and are not available for
expenditure in the park. Congressional appropriations are the only
source of funds for administration and development.

_Dogs and Cats_—Dogs and cats may be taken into the park, but must be
kept on leash, crated, or otherwise under physical restrictive control
while within park boundaries.

_Penalties_—The penalty, upon conviction, for violations of the rules
and regulations may be a fine not exceeding $500, or imprisonment not
exceeding 6 months, or both, together with all costs of the proceedings.

 For sale by the Superintendent of Documents, U. S. Government Printing
        Office, Washington 25, D. C.—Price $3.75 per 100 copies

Reprint 1952             U. S. GOVERNMENT PRINTING OFFICE: 1952 O—974703

                          Transcriber’s Notes

—Silently corrected a few typos.

—Retained publication information from the printed edition: this eBook
  is public-domain in the country of publication.

—In the text versions only, text in italics is delimited by

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