Monday, October 15, 2012

Yellowstone National Park

Yellowstone was amazing!!! We drove in from Jackson Hole through Grand Teton National Park and went through Moose Junction. It was not pretty. There was a lot of sage brush and not much else, well except for the giant Teton mountain range in the background LOL! I had my concerns that Yellowstone was going to be a bust but as we got to the park we realized that it was going to be much prettier than expected.

Our first stop was at these falls. We were so excited to see something besides sage brush that we spent a lot of time here walking around and throwing rocks.

Old Faithful was at the top of my must do list. We had to wait 15 minutes before it went off. It kept teasing us. I liked the building anticipation but Andrew did not. 

We actually had a pretty long and spectacular show. Apparently you never know what it's going to do. It could be a long eruption or it could be short. It could be a tall spout or it could be short and weak. According to the park rangers we got lucky and had a really good show!

This buffalo was our first wildlife sighting and it was pretty exciting for us.

This place we stopped was awesome. (I'm going to have to get our map out and see where this was) There was steam popping up everywhere. The colors were so vivid they can't even be described. Everywhere we turned we were oohing and awing. 

This picture looks like a post-apocalyptic wasteland or something, doesn't it?

This was another geyser. It was a spunky little thing that kept spouting off.

I have been seeing pictures of the Grand Prismatic Geyser on Pinterest so that was high on my priority list. Unfortunately all of the pictures we see are taken from the sky so we didn't get to see what we thought we were going to see but this mid-basis geyser stop did not disappoint. 

After leaving we saw more buffalo on our drive through the park.

They owned the road and cause a bit of a traffic jam. They weren't in a hurry either.

We (the kids and I) added a new state on this trip. Montana! 

On our way back to the hotel we saw more wildlife. This is an Elk I believe. It was quite majestic just hanging out on this little island in the middle of the river. It was like he was posing for us.

Then he had enough and he left.

Our last stop of the day was the Grand Canyon of Yellowstone. It was so impressive. I wish I could have conveyed the grander through pictures but we were losing light fast and this is the best I could do without my tri-pod. I still can't believe I forgot to bring it.

There was so much more in the park that we wanted to see. We never even saw any of the mud pots. The next day the weather wasn't great so we didn't take the time to drive all the way back to Yellowstone. I guess that gives us something to do the next time. We had a long drive (about two hours) to get back to our hotel. It was incredible dark with very little in the way of civilization between us and our hotel. It was a bit of a nerve wracking drive. We saw wolves, a fox and the largest elk ever while driving back. Thankfully we didn't hit anything while driving through the dark and dead park.

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