The drive from Billings to Yellowstone was a bit hairy. Really don’t like driving in the snow. The roads were pretty clear but not clear enough for me! Stopped and saw a nice spot along the way.
It was a pretty long drive to West Yellowstone and I found out the Madison campground was full when we stopped at the ranger booth. So I turned around and went back to another campground I saw on the way.
Bakers Hole Campground
I chose a site close to the river and the bathroom. I was pleased to see they had food lockers that were bear safe. I didn’t use them as the van was all closed up. It was to get down in the 30’s!!
We just ate cereal in the van and got an early start.
Yellowstone National Park
I saved another $35 on the entrance fee since I had my annual pass (yippee!)
We weren’t in the park long before we came to a screeching halt. I soon saw why.
I had decided to make the loop heading north first. Meaning I would see Old Faithful last.
Terrace Hot Spring
The first stop was one of the many hot springs. Some of the springs have been blocked by rocks from people throwing them in the springs. They say new springs pop up all the time and the ground is unstable and thinner than it looks. I was also told that a man walked off the path and the ground gave way and before anyone could reach him he was dead.
Just a short walk down a paved walkway and you were treated to this view.
Again we came to a stop. I saw what I bought was smoke billowing up just ahead. Turns out it was a hot spring! It was pretty cool so the steam was excessive!
While there I struck up a conversation with a fella from Capistrano Beach, CA. He was super nice and said to look him up when I get down that way!
This was a much longer hike but was super cool!
These were some of my favourites!
This herd of bison were spotted on the was to the next stop
Norris Geyser Basin
This too was quite a hike around all the springs. They were beautiful. The air all around all of these areas was thick with the odor of sulfur.
As I mentioned earlier!
Brink of the Lower Falls
This hike was quite strenuous. There were 10 switchbacks and a change in elevation of about 200 feet. That doesn’t sound like much until you factor in that your at 7500 feet above sea level. Then we drove up a ways and there was an overlook with a spectacular view!
Mud Caldron and sites on the way
I must say that I was disappointed at the commercialism surrounding old faithful. I literally could not locate where I was to park to have the shortest walk to the geyser. The parking lot was nearly empty as it was 7:30 ain the evening. I finally parked next to another van with a couple getting out and asked them, they didn’t know either. They got out and started walking ahead of me. I saw a very small sign with an arrow indicating the direction, so I yelled at them and said it was this way. There are many other geysers and hot springs there so walked around and looked at them. Some told us it was about to blow in 30 or so minutes. So we waited.
It was dark…
It was really late when we left Old Faithful. I had planned to camp 30 miles but due to the hour I pulled into a picnic area. They mostly are loops that have free coverage and restrooms. I backed in and blacked out the van. Super quiet and DARK! I got spooked a little going to the bathroom at night due to all the bear talk. No worries though. No photo since I left before sunrise!
Driving to Grand Teton
Next, Grand Teton!