A day at Yellowstone
Trip Start Jun 20, 2010
24Trip End Jul 10, 2010
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Today was a much better day! We slept in a bit (7:00 for Robbie and I). I took care of the laundry (it never ends). Packed up a lunch and headed out to explore Yellowstone. The weather was beautiful. Bright, sunny skies with occasional clouds and a nice 72 degrees. As we made our way north, we stopped at the Lewis Lake falls which are very pretty. We climbed around on the rocks and followed a short path toward the top of the falls. It was a lot of fun but we definitely noticed the altitude difference. The air is much thinner up here and you become winded easier.
From there we moved on, and noted the widespread fire damage from a huge fire in 1988. The forest is still recovering. The new growth is only about 10 feet tall. Typically the trees are 30-35 feet tall so they still have a long way to go. The burned out trees in between spread as far as your eye can see. We stopped at the first visitor center and learned about how fires start ( usually a lightening strike)the firefighting and recovery. It was pretty interesting .
Robbie is working on another Jr. Ranger badge so we went to a ranger talk on bison. There are about 2500 in the park. We had lunch in a nearby picnic area and explored some of the Yellowstone lake front. There was a cool black sand beach and we spotted some tracks that may have been from a wolf.
Next stop was one of the geyser basins. The pools are so colorful and clear. As we walked along the boardwalk paths of the thermal pools we came across a pretty large elk just sitting amongst them. We were all pretty impressed and surprised to see him in that area. The thermal pools have signs posted everywhere to stay on the walkways as the ground is thin and the superheated water lies just beneath the surface. So how does the elk know where to walk?
From there we moved on to the famous Old Faithful Geyser. We arrived in that area at 5:00 and it was predicted to go off at around 6. We wasted some time checking out the Old Faithful Inn. It is a historic hotel made mostly if not entirely of logs. The Wilderness Lodge in Walt Disney World is modeled after it.
We actually had some cell service there so I posted yesterdays blog while waiting for the geyser to erupt. It is pretty cool to see and the kids really enjoyed it. We did a bit of shopping and then debated whether or not to head back to camp or continue on for a bit. We saw some ominous clouds but decided to go for it and we were so glad that we did. We came across some elk with 2 babies playing in a field . I took some nice video,hope it comes through. We also found a pretty good size herd of buffalo also with a lot of young .
The sky continued to darken and I took many sky and cloud pictures . The lightening picked up and the rain came down but the roads were not bad. We saw a beautiful rainbow so I guess the storm was worth it. By then time we returned back to camp it was late so Rob built a small fire,roasted a few hot dogs and called it a night. I will try to post this with some pictures tomorrow. More of Yellowstone tomorrow!