3.9 Magnitude Earthquake Shakes Grand Teton National Park

3.9 Magnitude Earthquake Shakes Grand Teton National Park

Written by on February 25, 2021

Grand Teton National Park got a case of shivers this week, but not from the frigid, snowy weather but a low-magnitude earthquake.

The United States Geological Survey recorded an earthquake in the Jackson area at 10:43 a.m. Wednesday morning. The origin of the quake, called the epicenter, was located miles underneath the town of Kelly.

Two seismographs, one at the USGS and the other at the Montana Bureau of Mines and Technology, recorded the event. Their data puts the quake at anywhere from seven to nine and a half miles below the surface.

But if an earthquake happens in the forest, does anyone feel it?

The magnitude of the earthquake was between 3.6 to 3.9. According to the official Earthquake Magnitude Scale used to quantify earthquakes around the world, this is a minor quake. Roughly 30,000 happen every year.

The effects of any quake between magnitudes 2.5 to 5.4 can be felt but will only cause minor – if any – damage to buildings. Given the population of Kelly is 10, not including grizzly bears, it’s possible nobody felt it.

Even by Wyoming standards, this isn’t a noteworthy earthquake. Thousands of earthquakes og a similar scale happen in Yellowstone National Park every year.

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