Salt River Range

Contributed photo
Contributed photo
Location: East of Alpine, WY
GPS:   43d 8m 47s    -110d 52m 22s
Map / Satellite Image: Google Link

Travel Directions:
From I-80 take WY Exit 5, “Front Street / WY-89 N”
Follow WY-89, UT-16, UT-30, and WY-89 for 50.0 miles.
Turn Left (N) onto US-30; go 29.6 miles.
Bear Right (N) onto WY-89, ID-61; go 10.1 miles.
Turn Right (E) onto US-89; go 59.2 miles to Alpine, WY.

The Salt River Range, located in western Wyoming, is one of 17 mountain ranges mentioned by Annie Proulx in her “Catalogue Aria” [1] of locations where Ennis and Jack spent time together over their 20 years of “high-altitude fucks.” [2] It is one of several mountain ranges within the Bridger-Teton National Forest, an area of more than 3.4 million acres (5,300 sq. miles; 13,800 sq. km).

The Salt River Range spans a distance of nearly 55 miles (88 km), from the village of Alpine, WY, (population 550) in the north, to Smoot, WY, in the south. It is bounded on the west by the Salt River and on the east by the Greys River and the Wyoming Range. The Salt River gets its name from the naturally occuring salt deposits located along its banks. Early Native Americans discovered these deposits and exploited them for their own needs, as did later Wyoming settlers.

The Salt River Range and the Wyoming Range are part of a complex watershed. The Salt River flows north into the eastern portion of the Palisades Reservoir about 2 miles (3 km) southwest of Alpine. The Greys River also flows north and is joined by the Little Greys River about 8 miles (13 km) east of Alpine. The river then flows northwest and joins the Snake River just north of Alpine. The Snake River also flows into the Palisades Reservoir.

Alpine is a convenient starting point for anyone wishing to explore these mountains and rivers. Motel accommodations are available in “downtown” Alpine and scattered campsites can be found along the banks of the Greys / Little Greys Rivers east and southeast of Alpine. For the extreme adventurer, Jackson Hole Outfitters, of Alpine, can provide day-long horseback rides deep into the mountainous back country. For pictures taken during such a ride, see “Riding the Salt River Range” in Albums.


[1] “Years on years they worked their way through the high meadows and mountain drainages ... Salt River Range, into the Wind Rivers over and again ...” Brokeback Mountain - Story to Screenplay by Annie Proulx, Larry McMurtry and Diana Ossana (Scribner) ISBN-13: 978-0-7432-9416-4, page 17.
[2] Ibid., page 21

Pictures of surrounding area:













  Revised 16 March 2011