I knew about Yellowstone before I arrived here was that it was the
first national park established in our country and that it was the
home of Old Faithful and Yogi Bear.
sure I'd seen travel specials on it, but don't remember being moved
enough to make it a destination goal. When I discovered that my
most direct path back to Austin would take us through Yellowstone
and the Grand Tetons, I was pleased but not particularly thrilled
about it. I thought that level of excitement had been spent in Alaska
and Canada, but boy was I wrong!
we arrived through the north gate, we were both exclaiming, "I
didn't think it would be THIS beautiful!" I was told that the
only RV park that could accommodate my size home and car was the
one that cost the most - in fact the most expensive night I've paid
for a space to park in the 2 years that I've been RVing - $33.00
per night. And it's not even that nice a park, but it does have
full hookups and from what I've seen of the park just driving 60
miles into it so far, I am sure it will be worth it just to see
this wonder of a place.
drive through the park is an incredible treat in itself - the curving
road, the amazing cliff formations, the breathtaking scenery beg
you to slow down and savor this gift for all of your senses.
and I are absolutely enthralled with the landscape here - it feels
like a totally different cosmic environment. To see boiling water
bubbling from the earth in pools everywhere - to smell the sulfuric
steam as it rises and to stare unbelievably at the vivid, strange
colors tinting the surrounding land as if painted by the minerals
in the whirling water - these are sights and experiences I would
not trade for any other.
park still has the feel of a primitive land where buffalo, bear,
elk and coyote roam about freely among cold flowing streams and
clear blue lakes right next to boiling cauldrons and geysers!
steaming earth makes it feel like you would be just as likely to
see dinosaurs stomping around, like getting a glimpse back to prehistoric
days - what a trip!
Like No Other Place on Earth"
the title of the book I bought today about this national treasure
of ours. I just really had no idea it would be this beautiful or
interesting a place. Geologists
refer to Yellowstone as a "hotspot," a concentrated region
of very hot rock that originates deep within the earth, with spectacular
results on the surface. An article in the park newspaper asks the
question that I am sure is on everyone's mind as they drive through
this vast smoking jungle: "Is Yellowstone Ready to Blow?"
The scientists say, "It's a huge breathing caldera capable
of doing a lot of things as far as we know."
favorite spot was a place called Artist's Point at the Grand Canyon
of Yellowstone. This is an area that rivals the one in Arizona for
sure with the beauty and layering of the colors of the massive canyon
and the distant waterfall still looming so large you think you can
feel the spray. When I got to the top of the lookout, there was
a young Eastern Indian couple there and he commented to me in the
most sincere awe-filled voice: "Oh, this is too big for my
of the first explorers of this area in 1870 wrote: "I do
not know of any portion of our country where a national park can
be established furnishing to visitors more wonderful attractions
than here. These wonders are so different from anything we have
ever seen - they are so various, so extensive - that the feeling
in my mind from the moment they began to appear until we left them
has been one of intense surprise and of incredulity. Every day spent
in surveying them has revealed to me some new beauty, and now that
I have left them, I begin to feel a skepticism which clothes them
in a memory clouded by doubt."
am not surprised that the first reports of this area were not believed
- it was hard to imagine then that a land like this could actually
exist - it still is...
I know is that this is special land - a place where you can hear
the voice of the earth and see its breath, sometimes soft and gentle,
sometimes hissing violently. And it's a place with magic pools and
fairy waterfalls that completely enchanted me and made me vow to
at Minerva Terrace
had only planned to spend two days, but after spending the entire
day exploring just one of the loops and its side roads, we decided
it would be ridiculous to be this close and not see more, and
we wanted to go back through the upper loop that held the Minerva
Terraces and the little interesting roads that offshoot from it.
course, we stopped at Old Faithful who remained faithful and put
on its show for us. I enjoyed reading another 1870 account of its
were convinced that there was not on the globe another region where
nature had crowded so much of grandeur and majesty with so
much of novelty and wonder. Judge, then, of our astonishment on
entering this basin, to see at no great distance before us an immense
body of sparkling water, projected suddenly and with terrific force
into the air to the height of over one hundred feet
was another example of thinking I had known what something was all
about, but realizing I knew nothing until I had witnessed it with
my own two eyes.
Anchorage I had a bear in my backyard. Here in Yellowstone we had
buffalo moseying through our front yard this morning. I glanced
out my front window and saw a big brown hump going by. As I got
up for a closer look, I couldn't believe there were six buffalo
strolling down my driveway! As I stepped carefully outside onto
my front step, one turned and looked at me, but kept right on trucking
down the road. I was happy I got some good pictures as proof of
my unusual neighbors in Yellowstone.
wound up seeing several individual and then several herds of them
as we drove around today. Once when I stopped to get gas, a man
at the station said that up ahead there was a "buffalo jam"
- a usual occurrence in the park when those big guys decide to take
a stroll within view of the road.