“Up” Memory Lane in Grand Teton National Park – The Hunter Hereford Ranch

Hunter Hereford Barn

Most people go “down memory lane” but if you want to visit these historic barns and structures, you’ll have to take a short hike “up” a slight incline!

Bill & Eileen Hunter used the ranch to raise purebred Hereford cattle. The historic Hunter Hereford Ranch rests remotely at the far east end of Antelope Flats Road. 

Hunter Hereford Barns

Even though the barn and buildings are accessible to the public, few people actually visit the location. I suspect there are two major reasons for the lack of tourist activity. One: It takes a mile to mile and a half hike on a slightly inclined road. Two: Many people are unsure if it is legal to go there. I can help with the latter.

Grand Teton National Park took possession of the property and buildings in 1985 after the passing of Eileen Hunter. The region is inside the Park’s boundaries, but they don’t promote the area at all. In fact, a small wooden sign near the road says “authorized vehicles only”. I flagged a Park Ranger a couple of years ago and asked about the sign. He told me we could drive to the fence and park, then hike in. He added the road and parking area is an access point to the National Forest for the bison hunters.

Outbuildings

“The Wild Country” Movie Set

“The ranch was used as a movie set for the film The Wild Country in the 1960s. Many of the original James Williams homestead buildings were altered slightly in order to fit a more romanticized Hollywood interpretation of what western architecture should look like. The alterations to the buildings were only done on the northern elevations that would be visible in the movie and could be easily removed. The wooden shingle roofs were covered in wood planking, and walls were covered with vertical log-slab siding. The most obvious alteration can be seen on the open hay shed, which was built up to resemble a church. The structure was originally open on all four sides and supported by posts. Just the north elevation was visible in the movie; this wall was enclosed with clapboard siding, and faux windows were installed with Greek Revival decorative pediments.” Source: Jackson Hole Historical Society

Outbuildings

The Jackson Hole Historical Society and Museum has detailed information about this homestead. Click Here!

Memory Lane

To get to the Hunter Hereford Ranch, follow Antelope Flats to the East Boundary Road, then drive an extra few hundred yards to the locked gate. Park there, then hike up the two track road. At a normal pace, it would take roughly 20-25 minutes to make it to the Hunter Hereford structures. Along the way, you’ll pass another smaller homestead, shown at the bottom of this page. I don’t know the name of that house and barn but it is also owned by the Park.

House Details

Other than the large barn, most of the old buildings are in disrepair and all are boarded up. Still, they are interesting! The Park Service uses some of them for storage.

Barn Detail

This barn is in great shape! 

“The barn that was designed by Piers was an attempt to create a modern building that fit in with the more rustic style found throughout the valley. Nearby barns at Mormon Row were constructed from logs piece by piece and had a modest appearance. The Hunters wanted to emulate the building materials used on Mormon Row but on a more impressive scale. The resulting barn, despite being inspired by the small rustic structures nearby, is anything but rustic. The barn was built onto a foundation of cement, with an enormous hayloft that was well beyond the engineering capabilities of the early homesteaders. The barn was electrified and plumbed, where the early homes in the valley were without these modern amenities. The hayloft was also designed to hold dances and featured a staircase rather than a ladder. The impressive structure still stands today.:” Source: Jackson Hole Historical Society

Gears, Sprockets & Chains

For the “textures hounds”, there are plenty of photographic opportunities on and around the structures.

Gears, Sprockets & Chains

Gears, Sprockets & Chains

Handle

This handle was found on one of the sliding doors on what looks like an old garage.

Antlers and Skull

I hiked to the Hunter Hereford Ranch with a tripod, camera and 60-600mm zoom lens. The lens with a large range gave me a lot of options, but you could use several individual lenses to do the same thing.

Barn Doors

There is no access to the interior of the main barn. No telling what’s inside!

Small Barn Pano

I don’t know much about this barn and ranch house. It’s located about half way up the road.

Small Barn

The metal roof on this barn has several large tears in it. For this photo, I did some digital roof repairs!

Main House

The house is still in pretty good shape but could use some tender loving care. Hopefully, the Park Service will “see the light” and preserve all of the  the buildings for future generations of park visitors.

Photography Info for these Images

All of these images were taken on September 17, 2021 using a Sony A1 mirrorless camera and a Sigma Sport 60-600mm lens (Sigma does not make that lens for a Sony E Mount, so I bought the Canon version of the Sigma lens and Sigma to Sony adapter). I mentioned earlier that I took a tripod with me, which helps with panos, but wouldn’t have been absolutely necessary for most of these images. I chose to use a vintage photo “preset” in Lightroom for processing. Presets are a good way to give each photo a similar look and feel—and they save a lot of time!

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If your are so inclined, I added a small section in the Navigation Bar to allow readers help me offset the rising costs of gasoline and web site fees. Several readers have made donations over the past few months…thanks to all of them!

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Additional Related Links and Pages

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Best of the Tetons Photo Tours

I offer year round photo tours in Grand Teton National Park and Winter tours in the National Elk Refuge.  Book now! Click the image for additional information.

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Travelpro 29-Inch Maxlite 5 Review and Packing Test

I bring to you an in-depth review of the Travelpro Maxlite 5 29-inch suitcase. This massive piece of luggage comes in several different colors. I show you all the pertinent details and also just how much you can pack into it. You’ll also see weights, dimensions, and a comparison to the Travelpro Maxlite Rollaboard bag […]

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Tour of Mount Rushmore National Memorial South Dakota

I take you on a tour of Mount Rushmore National Memorial in South Dakota. This incredible monument commemorates four different United States presidents. Although in a relatively remote location, this memorial receives millions of visitors. The main complex is easy to walk and is ADA-friendly. If you’re able, you can tour the Presidential Trail and […]

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Foliage Reports: September/October 2021

Jackson Hole & Grand Teton National Park

Each year, my email box fills with people wanting me to tell them when “peak foliage” will occur. Traditionally, that happens sometime between September 25 and October 5, but that depends a lot of where you are in the valley. And, each year is different, so it always a matter of averaging several years. The links I am supplying at the top of this page should help you make your own determinations.

Changing Leaf

Click Here to see 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019,

& 2020 Foliage Reports

During September, I’ll work on two pages simultaneously. This September Foliage 2021 post will contain more specific information about the ever changing foliage status in the area. The September 2021 Daily Journal for JH and GTNP page will contain some foliage information, but will focus more on wildlife and landscapes. You’ll want to go to both regularly.

Archived Resources: September Daily Journals

September 2021 | September 2020September 2019 | September 2018September 2017 | September 2016  |  September 2015   | September 2014:  | September 2013:

Fall Season Feature Posts

Click this link to find a variety of Feature Post from earlier years!

Foliage Scale 2015

Foliage Scale 2020

 Note: Peak Fall foliage is not a one day event! It evolves over several weeks. Some areas go first, then lose leaves while others are just beginning. You should be able to find colorful foliage anytime from around the 10th of September to the first week in October.

Science of Fall Colors

Click the link above to view an informative page written by the US Forest Service

Please take a minute and register to sign up to follow this site. I’d love to have another couple hundred new subscribers from the group visiting the site this fall. MJ

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September 11, 2020 – Saturday

Sleeping Indian Willows

Sleeping Indian Willows: Many of the willows along the Gros Ventre River are nearing peak, but there are other zones a bit behind. This photo was taken September 10, 2021.

Schwabacher Landing

Schwabacher Landing: Taken September 10,2021. The cottonwoods along the Snake River have patchy areas of yellow. Willows and the ground cover are turning. Note the relatively clear skies on Friday. Haze and smoke can fill in on any day this year. Be patient and persistent, and you may hit a great morning.

Gros Ventre Willows

Gros Ventre Willows:

Mountain Maples

This group of Mountain Maple trees were photographed September 9, 2021. The Maples in the Snake River canyon are not quite ready, but these photos taken along the Palisades Reservoir were farther along.

Mountain Maples

Mountain Maples: The aspens in the same region are still green. Still…it’s time to head down the canyon!

Mountain Maples

Mountain Maples:

As of September 11, 2021 a few friends are telling me Oxbow Bend is “just” beginning to change, but is far from peak. When I drove south to get to the Mountain Maples, I observed that most of the Aspens and Cottonwoods along the roadway towards Hoback Junction have not been changing much.

With gasoline hovering around $4 per gallon this year, I haven’t been driving north that often. If you are so inclined, you are welcome to donate to this site to help me afford the extra gas costs this year. Click the link in the navigation bar if on a computer, or at the very bottom of the page if you are using a phone or pad. Thanks to all that have already donated a few $!

Black Bear

Moose-Wilson Road Comments:

Normally, we see Black Bears along the Moose-Wilson Road, and they look even better as the leaves on the Black Hawthorn bushes turn from green to orange. Over the past few years, and worse again this year, the Park Service has all but closed the road to photography. There is only a .5 mile section of the roadway in the prime bear zone open to roadside parking, and with the berry crop thin in that area, about the only photos you will get there will be “drive by shooting”. The photo above was taken out the window as I was lucky to be “forced” to be stopped by the Wildlife Volunteer. When the line of traffic cleared, I had to stop shooting and move on.  You can still park at the Sawmill Pond overlook and have a chance to see a bear. If you go early enough, you should be able to get a parking spot at the Laurance S. Rockefeller Preserve and possibly see a bear in that area. The Preserve might also be a good place to photograph tight shots of leaves and berries.

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Remember, this is the Initial Entry for the 2020 Foliage Reports. I will be adding more photos and updates fairly often throughout the foliage season.


Best of the Tetons Photo Tours

I offer year round photo tours in Grand Teton National Park. Seasons are changing! Book now! Click the image for additional information.

Client Comments: “As a published and passionate photographer, I recognized Michael Jackson’s extraordinary skills as a photographer. Today I learned more about composition and creative technical ideas than I ever could have imagined.” G.S., Jackson Hole

The post Foliage Reports: September/October 2021 first appeared on Best of the Tetons, Area Info & Photography.