59 years ago today - Hebgen Lake Quake/Yellowstone

Rockskipper

No ETA
.
Joined
Jun 11, 2017
Messages
2,970
Interesting post from "This is Livingston" FB page (there are more stories there). I didn't write this, though it would've been an interesting experience for sure.

Man’s Best Friend
All of my relatives went camping in the Yellowstone area at the time of the quake, except for my great-grandmother Annie Laurie Metcalf, and my immediate family (the Jack Bates family) who stayed in Livingston to care for our grandmother. They were all camped directly under the mountain that came down and caused all of the devastation and death.

My Aunt Audrey and Uncle Sam Whitney had a German Shepherd named Penny. The dog started pacing and howling, and acting really strange, and they were unable to calm the animal down. My Aunt Audrey, sensing Penny’s intuition, believed that something was going to happen, and suggested leaving the immediate area. My family of Grandparents, Aunts, Uncles, and cousins packed up their tents and everything, and left the camping area. I was told that they had proceeded to the other side of the river to set up camp.

They had got set up across the river when all hell broke loose and they watched the entire mountain go down. My grandmother, Irene Braughton, said they watched in horror and complete helplessness as they saw people hanging from trees trying to escape the mountain’s collapse, watching cars driving down the roads, and the road would open up right in front of them and swallow the vehicle, and hearing people crying and screaming in the darkness and underground and others unable to get to them. They could see where people had been at their tents but swept away by the rock slides. Aunt Audrey said the devastation was horrible. My family members were trapped—but alive. All access roads were destroyed and they had no way to communicate with the outside world. Over time, supplies were airlifted and packed into them.

Livingston shook and rolled as the quake moved through. Just like everyone in the area, we knew immediately the location of the epicenter of the quake. It was precisely where my relatives had gone camping. My immediate family was unable to reach any of our relatives, and we sat by the phone for days waiting to hear something, not knowing if my extended family was alive or dead. I remember all of the neighbors standing outside talking about the quake and feeling the aftershocks. It was the first time my brother Rocky had slept downstairs. When the quake hit, my mother woke up saying, “Oh my God, there’s a quake, and Rocky’s in the basement. Not to worry, my brother slept all the way through it. Needless to say, as much as we all loved Yellowstone Park, it was many years before we were psychologically prepared to venture up there again. Thank God for Penny, the German Shepherd, and the good sense my relatives had to listen to her, or we would never have seen any of my family again. They all got out, unscathed by the tragedy, but changed—by all that they had seen and lived through.

—Debbie Bates Hamilton,Livingston
 
Last edited:

Rockskipper

No ETA
.
Joined
Jun 11, 2017
Messages
2,970
@Rockskipper - would your great-grandmother Metcalf be related to the person the Lee Metcalf Wilderness was named after?
I think you must be thinking I wrote that account, but I took it off the FB page for Livingston. It was kind of confusing, so I tried to make it clearer. You could get on there and contact the person who wrote it, I guess, if you really wanted to know (Debbie Bates Hamilton, Livingston). Odds are good they might be related, as they're in Montana.
 
Last edited:

Jackson

I like to go outside.
.
Joined
May 31, 2015
Messages
2,396
My grandmother was a teenager living in West Yellowstone at the time. She was sitting on her porch when it happened. She said the trees swayed so much back and forth that some bent so far as to touch the ground. Lots of loud rumbling. I believe she said that people thought it was a bomb or something initially, with the Cold War and all.
 

tennistime99

Member
Joined
Jan 16, 2018
Messages
99
Looking down River from the debris damn created by the slide:


The lake is behind and below you if you are looking in the direction of the photo.

I stumbled on this road purely by accident on a trip many years ago and had totally forgotten where it was until I stumbled into it again while on a trip with my brother.

Sent from my XT1575 using Tapatalk
 

bentley

Member
Joined
Feb 19, 2013
Messages
15
Interesting post from "This is Livingston" FB page (there are more stories there). I didn't write this, though it would've been an interesting experience for sure.

Man’s Best Friend
All of my relatives went camping in the Yellowstone area at the time of the quake, except for my great-grandmother Annie Laurie Metcalf, and my immediate family (the Jack Bates family) who stayed in Livingston to care for our grandmother. They were all camped directly under the mountain that came down and caused all of the devastation and death.

My Aunt Audrey and Uncle Sam Whitney had a German Shepherd named Penny. The dog started pacing and howling, and acting really strange, and they were unable to calm the animal down. My Aunt Audrey, sensing Penny’s intuition, believed that something was going to happen, and suggested leaving the immediate area. My family of Grandparents, Aunts, Uncles, and cousins packed up their tents and everything, and left the camping area. I was told that they had proceeded to the other side of the river to set up camp.

They had got set up across the river when all hell broke loose and they watched the entire mountain go down. My grandmother, Irene Braughton, said they watched in horror and complete helplessness as they saw people hanging from trees trying to escape the mountain’s collapse, watching cars driving down the roads, and the road would open up right in front of them and swallow the vehicle, and hearing people crying and screaming in the darkness and underground and others unable to get to them. They could see where people had been at their tents but swept away by the rock slides. Aunt Audrey said the devastation was horrible. My family members were trapped—but alive. All access roads were destroyed and they had no way to communicate with the outside world. Over time, supplies were airlifted and packed into them.

Livingston shook and rolled as the quake moved through. Just like everyone in the area, we knew immediately the location of the epicenter of the quake. It was precisely where my relatives had gone camping. My immediate family was unable to reach any of our relatives, and we sat by the phone for days waiting to hear something, not knowing if my extended family was alive or dead. I remember all of the neighbors standing outside talking about the quake and feeling the aftershocks. It was the first time my brother Rocky had slept downstairs. When the quake hit, my mother woke up saying, “Oh my God, there’s a quake, and Rocky’s in the basement. Not to worry, my brother slept all the way through it. Needless to say, as much as we all loved Yellowstone Park, it was many years before we were psychologically prepared to venture up there again. Thank God for Penny, the German Shepherd, and the good sense my relatives had to listen to her, or we would never have seen any of my family again. They all got out, unscathed by the tragedy, but changed—by all that they had seen and lived through.

—Debbie Bates Hamilton,Livingston
I had almost forgotten about this eve
Interesting post from "This is Livingston" FB page (there are more stories there). I didn't write this, though it would've been an interesting experience for sure.

Man’s Best Friend
All of my relatives went camping in the Yellowstone area at the time of the quake, except for my great-grandmother Annie Laurie Metcalf, and my immediate family (the Jack Bates family) who stayed in Livingston to care for our grandmother. They were all camped directly under the mountain that came down and caused all of the devastation and death.

My Aunt Audrey and Uncle Sam Whitney had a German Shepherd named Penny. The dog started pacing and howling, and acting really strange, and they were unable to calm the animal down. My Aunt Audrey, sensing Penny’s intuition, believed that something was going to happen, and suggested leaving the immediate area. My family of Grandparents, Aunts, Uncles, and cousins packed up their tents and everything, and left the camping area. I was told that they had proceeded to the other side of the river to set up camp.

They had got set up across the river when all hell broke loose and they watched the entire mountain go down. My grandmother, Irene Braughton, said they watched in horror and complete helplessness as they saw people hanging from trees trying to escape the mountain’s collapse, watching cars driving down the roads, and the road would open up right in front of them and swallow the vehicle, and hearing people crying and screaming in the darkness and underground and others unable to get to them. They could see where people had been at their tents but swept away by the rock slides. Aunt Audrey said the devastation was horrible. My family members were trapped—but alive. All access roads were destroyed and they had no way to communicate with the outside world. Over time, supplies were airlifted and packed into them.

Livingston shook and rolled as the quake moved through. Just like everyone in the area, we knew immediately the location of the epicenter of the quake. It was precisely where my relatives had gone camping. My immediate family was unable to reach any of our relatives, and we sat by the phone for days waiting to hear something, not knowing if my extended family was alive or dead. I remember all of the neighbors standing outside talking about the quake and feeling the aftershocks. It was the first time my brother Rocky had slept downstairs. When the quake hit, my mother woke up saying, “Oh my God, there’s a quake, and Rocky’s in the basement. Not to worry, my brother slept all the way through it. Needless to say, as much as we all loved Yellowstone Park, it was many years before we were psychologically prepared to venture up there again. Thank God for Penny, the German Shepherd, and the good sense my relatives had to listen to her, or we would never have seen any of my family again. They all got out, unscathed by the tragedy, but changed—by all that they had seen and lived through.

—Debbie Bates Hamilton,Livingston
My grandfather was friendly with a person who was the major shareholder of the only private cattle ranch in the Grand Teton National Forest at that time. The ranch was accessed on a lousy dirt road that started not far from Ashton Idaho and went clear through to Flagg Ranch in Wyoming. I was asleep in one of the cabins on that date and was suddenly awakened by this strange sensation. The whole cabin felt like it was shaking. It was in the early morning hours and it was pitch black. Cans and other food items were falling from the cupboards in the kitchen area and the bed was actually moving with me in it. This went on for what seemed like a very long period of time. I had heard of earthquakes before but had never experienced the sensation. It was a surreal experience. It didn't frighten me-I actually felt awed. As I remember it, there was a aftershock not too long afterwards that lasted quite a long time also; and then more of a shorter duration. Thanks for reminding me. It reminded me of my grandfather who has been dead for over 30 years. It was he who enabled me to have my great love for the outdoors.
Interesting post from "This is Livingston" FB page (there are more stories there). I didn't write this, though it would've been an interesting experience for sure.

Man’s Best Friend
All of my relatives went camping in the Yellowstone area at the time of the quake, except for my great-grandmother Annie Laurie Metcalf, and my immediate family (the Jack Bates family) who stayed in Livingston to care for our grandmother. They were all camped directly under the mountain that came down and caused all of the devastation and death.

My Aunt Audrey and Uncle Sam Whitney had a German Shepherd named Penny. The dog started pacing and howling, and acting really strange, and they were unable to calm the animal down. My Aunt Audrey, sensing Penny’s intuition, believed that something was going to happen, and suggested leaving the immediate area. My family of Grandparents, Aunts, Uncles, and cousins packed up their tents and everything, and left the camping area. I was told that they had proceeded to the other side of the river to set up camp.

They had got set up across the river when all hell broke loose and they watched the entire mountain go down. My grandmother, Irene Braughton, said they watched in horror and complete helplessness as they saw people hanging from trees trying to escape the mountain’s collapse, watching cars driving down the roads, and the road would open up right in front of them and swallow the vehicle, and hearing people crying and screaming in the darkness and underground and others unable to get to them. They could see where people had been at their tents but swept away by the rock slides. Aunt Audrey said the devastation was horrible. My family members were trapped—but alive. All access roads were destroyed and they had no way to communicate with the outside world. Over time, supplies were airlifted and packed into them.

Livingston shook and rolled as the quake moved through. Just like everyone in the area, we knew immediately the location of the epicenter of the quake. It was precisely where my relatives had gone camping. My immediate family was unable to reach any of our relatives, and we sat by the phone for days waiting to hear something, not knowing if my extended family was alive or dead. I remember all of the neighbors standing outside talking about the quake and feeling the aftershocks. It was the first time my brother Rocky had slept downstairs. When the quake hit, my mother woke up saying, “Oh my God, there’s a quake, and Rocky’s in the basement. Not to worry, my brother slept all the way through it. Needless to say, as much as we all loved Yellowstone Park, it was many years before we were psychologically prepared to venture up there again. Thank God for Penny, the German Shepherd, and the good sense my relatives had to listen to her, or we would never have seen any of my family again. They all got out, unscathed by the tragedy, but changed—by all that they had seen and lived through.

—Debbie Bates Hamilton,Livingston
 
Similar threads
Thread starter Title Forum Replies Date
K 38 Years Ago Today ... Close Grizzly Bear Encounter in Wyoming's Teton Wild. Everything Else 2
Nick The American West 150 Years Ago General Discussion 6
Jeremy C Hello again after a few years Noobs: Introduce yourself! 9
zionsky Ten years later...... General Discussion 2
Nick Mojave for New Years Trip Planning 0
SteveR Waterton Wildfire-Two Years On Hiking & Camping 7
Nick 10 Years of BCP General Discussion 25
SwimsWithTrout 40 years of Wandering the Wind's Backpacking 5
Glasterpiece Some storm pics I've taken over the years. Photography 0
Nick Invite New Years Eve in the desert Meet Up (Members Only) 40
Nick Hermit spends 27 years undetected in Maine woods General Discussion 4
IntrepidXJ New Years Eve Along the Reef Hiking & Camping 0
pixie1339 Zion, Snow Canyon & Red Cliffs New Years 2012 Hiking & Camping 16
Bob Yellowstone today ...... 4/21/2020 General Discussion 0
K Retired From Work Today ... Time to Return to the Wilds! General Discussion 20
Hiker Seth Franconia Ridge today Hiking & Camping 7
Perry Saw My First Utah Bear Today... With a Bonus General Discussion 0
kimbur96 Today's training hike Blodgett Peak Hiking & Camping 0
Nanda What did you buy today? Gear 335
Nick Maintenance Today Questions, Suggestions & Support 9
Henk Just found this today Noobs: Introduce yourself! 4
baltocharlie REI Flash on sale, today only 4/17 Gear 0
HomerJ Backpacker Mag - $4/yr - Today Only (6-14-12) General Discussion 5
Bill Strange Flickr Stats Today.... Photography 14
Bill 97° in Hanksville today General Discussion 7

Similar threads

Don't like ads? Become a BCP Supporting Member and kiss them all goodbye. Click here for more info.

Top