Laurance S. Rockefeller Preserve

Grand Teton National Park

Located in the southwestern corner of Grand Teton National Park on the shore of Phelps Lake, Laurance S. Rockefeller Preserve is one of the most pristine, scenic and wildlife-rich areas of the park. Here, elk wander through sagebrush meadows, bald eagles fish for cutthroat trout, and marmots sunbathe on rocks along the trails. There are also eight miles of trails that have been carefully designed to lead visitors to the most scenic and ecologically significant areas of the preserve, including Lake Creek, Phelps Lake and the adjacent ridges.

The 1,106-acre preserve, named after Laurance S. Rockefeller (son of John D. Rockefeller Jr.), is tucked at the base of the Teton Range on land that once served as a Rockefeller family retreat. John D. Rockefeller Jr., donated most of the 35,000 acres he owned in the area to the National Park Service in the 1950s, but held onto 3,000 acres as a summer getaway spot. Laurance Rockefeller eventually inherited the land and donated 2,000 acres of it to Grand Teton National Park in the 1990s. Before officially turning over the remaining acres in 2007, Rockefeller oversaw the removal of roads, utility lines and structures from the land’s previous life as a dude ranch. His goal was to return the land to its original, natural state.

Get a feel for the preserve at the eco-sensitive visitor center, which is made from recycled materials and is situated to capture views of the Teton Range.

GPS:

N43° 37.5066', W110° 47.0184'

Getting There:

Moose Wilson Road leads to Laurance S. Rockefeller Preserve from Teton Village, WY. The drive provides excellent opportunities to see wildlife, especially moose, which congregate in roadside marshes.

Road Conditions:

Moose Wilson Road becomes a dirt, one-lane road from just past the Granite Canyon Entrance Station to just before the Lake Creek bridge. The road is closed to all vehicles in winter, and to trucks, trailers and RVs year-round.

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