Picking up where we left off last time, here’s a bunch of pictures of geysers, hot springs and steaming mud pots. The first batch were all taken in the Old Faithful area. We walked the almost 2 mile boardwalk and gawked at the bubbling water and stinky steam rising from the earth. We took a TON of pictures, but I’ll try to keep it to a minimum and only show our favorites.
After walking the path we realized that Old Faithful (which erupts approx. every 80 minutes) had gone up while we far down the way and was scheduled to erupt again in another 45 minuets. We figured we couldn’t leave without seeing the most famous geyser in the park, so we wasted some time eating ice cream and then snagged a front row seat for the viewing.
Did I mention that it was hot that day? Yeah, really hot and sunny. By the time good old OF made an appearance we had been out in the sun for hours and about had enough. Consequently, we stayed to see the eruption, which only lasted a few minutes, and then booked it out of there for the long ride back to our campsite.
Our next day in the park we set out early from the campsite and drove up the east side of the park road. It had been really cold the night before (in the 40’s – brrr) and as we drove past Yellowstone Lake the steam from the lakeside geysers rose up over the water in a fine mist.
We saw our first Bison in the park when we pulled into the Mud Volcano parking area. He ambled across the road and right past the Do Not Enter sign like he owned the place!
The mud volcano area is full of steaming, bubbling mud pots. Smelly too…like hundreds of rotten eggs in one place.
This is the Dragon’s Mouth Spring. In addition to lots of steam it emits a constant loud rumbling noise. You can imagine what the first explorers to come upon this area must have thought. What else could it be but a dragon’s lair?
After the mud volcanoes we continued north through a wide open prairie area where we spotted a whole heard of bison. Actually, the truth is that we spotted a whole heard of cars on the side of the road and people running around with cameras before we saw the bison. It’s easy to see wild life around here- just look for lots of cars on the side of the road!
There were more Bison on the other side of the road. We captured a mama and baby as they headed down the hill. Even baby bison are huge.
The next stop was at the Grand Canyon of Yellowstone (Tim thinks they should have some up with a more original name). It was a pretty impressive canyon though.
See that waterfall way off in the distance at the top of the photo? We climbed down – and then back up- 280 stairs to see that tumbling water up close.
After spending an hour in the parking lot of Tower Falls visitor center enjoying the internet and catching up on emails we headed west to what would hopefully be our camping spot for the night. On the way we spotted an elk! There were so many other people looking and snapping pictures of the elk that we couldn’t get a shot without a person in it. I was going to crop this guy out, but the fact that he’s way too close for safety, and taking a picture with his ipad (hehe…what a dork) was too funny to take out.
We arrived at Indian Creek campground mid-afternoon and got the last spot available. We haven’t made any reservations at campgrounds in a long time and our luck at getting sites has been amazing. It helps that we’re self contained and have no problem staying somewhere without electric or water hook ups. There’s only one campground in the park with hook ups for RVs, and in addition to being outrageously priced you need to make a reservation wayyy in advance to get in. Also, it’s pretty much just a big parking lot full of RVs which really isn’t our idea of a campground at all.
There’s still another day of Yellowstone adventures to share, but it’s going to have to wait for another post and maybe another day. I leave you with another picture of elk, this time of the lady variety, enjoying an evening snack in the meadow.