• The Cathedral Group from the Teton Park Road

    Grand Teton

    National Park Wyoming

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  • Bears are active in Grand Teton

    Black and grizzly bears are roaming throughout the park--near roads, trails and in backcountry areas. Hikers and backcountry users are advised to travel in groups of three or more, make noise and carry bear spray. Visitors must stay 100 yards from bears. More »

  • Area closure in the area around Baxter's Pinnacle

    An area closure is in effect around Baxter's Pinnacle to protect nesting peregrine falcons. This closure precludes any climbs of Baxter's Pinnacle and usage of the walk-off gully. This closure will be in effect through 8-15-2013. More »

Restoring Fire Regimes

Fire has been a part of the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem for thousands of years. Its presence is important for wildlife habitat, nutrient recycling, plant diversity, and overall landscape health. Fire managers at Grand Teton National Park seek to strike a balance between restoring and maintaining natural processes associated with fire, and protecting human life and property.

During the past century, fire was feared and suppressed. This led to a significant and unnatural buildup of live and dead trees, pine needles, shrubs and grasses. Not only does this buildup create risks for developments near wildland areas, it poses a threat to forest health. Fire naturally thins the forest, recycles nutrients into the soil, and stimulates new plant growth. Fire ecology research shows that many plant and animal species benefit from the rejuvenating effects of fire.

A comprehensive fire plan guides fire managers at Grand Teton National Park allowing for the restoration of fire regimes through a full range of management tools. Natural fire, prescribed fire, fire effects monitoring and hazard fuel reduction help restore natural processes while providing for firefighter and public safety. Fire managers work with wildlife biologists, vegetation ecologists, historic preservation specialists and interagency cooperators to achieve common goals of enhanced habitat and improved ecosystem functions.

Fire Management Home

Did You Know?

Close-up of a lodgepole pine cone

Did you know that lodgepole pine trees grow on glacial moraines in Jackson Hole? Glacial moraines are ridges of rocky debris left behind as Ice Age glaciers melted. The soil on these ridges retains moisture and is more hospitable to trees than the cobbly, porous soil on the outwash plain.