Tuesday, July 12, 2011
Northwest trip, day 7 recap (with pictures)
Now for the details of our visit to Yellowstone:
We hit the east entrance before 7 AM and arrived along Yellowstone Lake an hour later. First stop (other than pictures) was at a visitor center, where Sandra bought the cards she's busy writing so folks will get them before we get back. Then, we followed the lake around, stopping at a geyser field in the West Thumb area. On to Old Faithful, which was finishing its display as we arrived - as the song goes, "Old Faithful Ain't Faithful any More" now waiting 90 minutes before spouting off again.
Now, we headed for paint pots - gotta have those pictures of mud bubbles popping (but you don't get to see them). The Norris geyser field is not as active as when we were last here in '74 - could be some earthquakes had something to do with it. On to Canyon to see some falls - but first, lunch at one of the vastly overpriced eatery options, the "deli." Shared a table with some folks from San Diego and their dog, which was a britdachsbasswhatever and looked like a long-haired dachsund with freckles - they knew because they'd had its DNA tested.
On to the Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone and the FALLS! Inspiration Point was changed, because it lost 20+ feet of walkway when it slid into the river during the '75 earthquake - as per a nice young ranger who had the nicest North Carolina accent.
We headed for the other side and Artists' Point where we ran into a traffic jam. Folks stopped in the middle of the road, abandoned their cars and ran to an opening in the woods with their cameras. Yep, it was a bear. Sandra joined them, then, as the cars got moving again, got some shots out the window. I think those who called it a grizzly will be disappointed, as my telephoto makes it look more like a black bear. Oh, yes - we did get someone to take our picture at Artists Point.
We headed for Tower Falls, which we didn't see in '74. En route we went through a pass that had snow along the road. I thought Sandra had had more than enough of snow back in February, but she had to stop and make snowballs. We decided we'd had enough, and headed for the north entrance (with a stop for scenic shots), then on to Bozeman following the valley of the Yellowstone. What a day!