Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Yellowstone!

Yesterday I visited Yellowstone with a couple of other people from Mountain Sky, two of whom worked in the park last year.  So we had tour guides.  The north entrance is about half an hour from Mountain Sky, so for out here it is considered just down the road.

Within the first ten minutes in the park we spotted some buffalo (buffalo are actually called bison).  They were chillin' on a patch of grass in the middle of the small park town of Mammoth, with cars buzzing around everywhere.  They own the park and really just do what they want-walk on lawns, stop traffic, chase people.
I did not get closer than what the picture shows; they are intimidating beasts and can run at up to 40 mph.  I also heard a lot of stories from my friends who had worked in Yellowstone about people getting too close to Buffalo and getting chased (my friend also petted a bison once).  Rangers will also yell at you and can even ticket you, which it turns out is pretty serious, as any crime on Federal property is a felony.

In another spot int he park we saw a momma bison with a newborn calf.  The afterbirth was still hanging out of the mother, so the calf, which they call red dogs for their color, was no more than 24 hours old.

From here we continued through the park and saw some sweet geysers, including Old Faithful.  Another nearby geyser called Beehive actually showed it up, but it was still sweet.  Japanese tourists were everywhere and were freaking out when the geysers went off.  They all tried to take each others pictures in the short window of the eruption and pointed and yelled.  Great sideshow.
The lodge by Old Faithful was sweet too.  It is the original one built in 1901, and has some sweeeet woodwork.
On the way back out of the park we stopped and saw lake Yellowstone, and then the namesake for which the park is named, a jaw-dropping, enormous gorge.  Like everything out here, the park is enormous, and all of the features are too.  Big valleys, big lakes, big mountains, big beastly buffalo.  Awesome.
 This relatively short post does not reflect the fact that it takes 2.5 to 3 hours to drive from the North entrance to Old Faithful and back up.  If you have not been to Yellowstone, it is one HUGE park.  We left at 12:30 and got back at 9pm.  Most of the time was spent driving, with a few stops here and there and one major one to wait for Old Faithful.
I can't wait to go back on another day off and do some good hiking and explore more.



1 comment:

  1. Loving the Blog! Keep up the great pics, great stories, and inspiration! wish I was there with ya

    ReplyDelete