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USGS Teams Up with Jackson Hole Mountain Resort to Research Teton Fault

September 18, 2017

Just after Labor Day, U.S. Geological Survey field crews began digging a trench within the Jackson Hole Mountain Resort ski area, on the lower reaches of Buffalo Bowl. 

Come learn why USGS scientists and partners dug this trench and what insights about the Teton Fault it will reveal before refilling the trench on closing day of fieldwork.

Note: Due to safety and time constraints, media will not be able to enter the trench. The availability will be held where the trench is clearly visible. Please coordinate all interview requests through Heidi Koontz at 720-320-1246 or

Who:              USGS scientists, partners (Wyoming Geological Survey, U.S. Forest Service and JHMR personnel)

What:             Significance of what’s been found in the Buffalo Bowl trench

When:            Wednesday, September 20, 2017, 10:30 a.m. to 12 p.m.

Where:           Jackson Hole Mountain Resort, intersection of McCollister Drive and Bowman Road

Why:              The USGS is investigating the history of past ground-rupturing earthquakes on the Teton Fault. Results from the study will contribute to understanding where and when large earthquakes occurred and improve seismic-hazard assessments for the region. Teton County (including Jackson) has 23,000 residents, and over three million people visit Grand Teton National Park annually.                                     

The Teton Fault is an approximate 40-mile (60-70 km) long feature that follows the eastern base of the Teton Range. Data from a previous trenching study in the 1990’s showed evidence of two large earthquakes occurring sometime over the past 11,000 years (Holocene period).

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