|We got to see lots of buffalo - near and far - yes -|
I took this picture from the driver side - stopped.
|We stayed at Old Faithful Lodge - parts are not open|
|The Grand Canyon of Yellowstone - most impressive to me|
|Old Faithful shoots 300 feet up every hour|
|The hotel is build around the geyser|
|This camper is like the camper we brought here in 1977|
In July of 1977 - Lulu and I visited Yellowstone Park with my Dad and my 6 month old son Drew. We were on a 30 day circle tour of the USA with a little car and trailer. The trailer looked exactly like the trailer in the picture here.
It was interesting to compare then and now - not just the park - but our lives. On that trip - we experienced a crowded Yellowstone. We stayed in a rustic campground. We circled a park that had busy roads and impossible parking.
This time - we were in the area on business. Back then - Lulu was a housewife raising her baby son. I was a young science teacher. My Dad would die a few years later - happy to get his only visit to the Western USA. Now - Lulu is in Montana to make a presentation for the federal government. Yellowstone was just a side trip.
Yellowstone is high in the Rockies at 10,000 feet. It is the first national park - about 3000 square miles in Wyoming. Long ago - it was an active volcano. Most of the park sits in the old caldera - the hole on the top of the volcano. There are thousands of geysers - fumeroles - hot springs - etc. It is a beautiful and eerie sight.
Add to the geological interests - we have a layer of plants and animals that flourish in this protected area. Campers - hikers - boaters - cyclists - enjoy the area for recreation. The high elevation produces a spectacular climate area. Since it had been protected now for almost 100 years - it has developed a layer of history. Along with the Grand Canyon and Yosemite - it has become an American Mecca. It has been named a World Heritage Site. That can be attested to all the visitors of different nationalities we met.
I experienced quite a bit of melancholy on this second and probably my last visit here. Maybe - it was the bit of altitude sickness I felt - that winded me a bit on high climbs. Yellowstone is a solid piece of Americana - something to be really proud of. It is a sad feeling that followed me down the mountain as the snow fell as I drove. My friend Ted replied tome with a video from Toby Keith - "Don't Let The Old Man In." It captured the moment. Ted is a great traveler - he loves spending time on his trips trying to imagine how it used to be.
In 4 hours - we were down out of the park at 4000 feet in Helena MT. We are here in a hotel to reflect and recharge our batteries. It is 44 degrees and sunny. Two nights here - then two nights in Butte MT - and we fly home Saturday.
I have gotten to checkoff state number 49.
|It was snowing during this eruption|
|300 foot falls in Yellowstone Canyon|
|Super heated water above boiling shoot out|
|The old north gate to Yellowstone|
|Hot Springs over 200 degrees|
|Old Faithful Snow Lodge was open but empty|
|Lots of fireplaces and rustic charm|
|Minerals color the pool|
|Lulu loved the wooden walkways|
|Magma down deep heats the water in this volcano|
|Yellowstone River starts here and flows east|
|This was before we had a 6 inch snowfall|
|Upper Falls - Yellowstone Grand Canyon|
|My favorite Yellowstone picture|
|World Heritage Site|
|Home home on the range|
|6 inches of fresh powder|
|In the summer - there would be a football size crowd here|
|The iconic Old Faithful Lodge|
|Parts of lodge still closed|
|Just enough snow to remind me why I moved to Florida|