A Wildlife Stake out in Yellowstone

Yellowstone is the first national park in the world. It got national park status in 1872, in case anyone is wondering. Yes that’s right, I paid attention!!  But it’s probably thanks to that that wildlife is so abundant – no hunters!

Bison 1

When I saw my first Bison up close it was a special moment. Part fear – is he going to smash up my car? But mostly awe – he was a majestic creature and had a really muscular body and a surprisingly woolly face! Continue reading

Incredible Star Gazing in Grand Teton National Park

We hit unchartered territory and left Old Faithful behind, past the vast Yellowstone Lake, and cruised down the John D Rockefeller Jr Parkway to Grand Teton National Park.

Tetons 2

We drank in the views of the Tetons over Jackson Lake. It was stunning at sunset, and equally stunning at night. I have never in my life seen so many stars. Continue reading

A Hike comes before a Fall at the Grand Prismatic Spring

The lovely couple we met over breakfast in Gardiner gave us some good advice. They said they had been coming here for 20 years but only just found the hike above the Grand Prismatic Spring, and they said that was even more stunning than walking up to it on the boardwalk. They were right!

Grand Prismatic Spring view

The Grand Prismatic Spring is a stunningly beautiful multicoloured spring in Yellowstone National Park. the lovely colours are caused by a combination of minerals and thermophilic bacteria (bacteria that like heat) so at different temperatures attract different types of bacteria.

We “hiked” (aka. walked) up from the Fairy Falls trailhead to the hill at the back of the Grand Prismatic Spring. It wasn’t the easiest of hikes; at one point the people in front started walking back towards us, and we realised a bison was on the path coming towards us! Continue reading

Paint Pots of Bubbling Mud

The boardwalk around Fountain Paint Pots was almost an afterthought; a quick stop on our last day. It isn’t one of the “top sights” in Yellowstone, but what it does have is panoramic views across the plains. So if you’re after a photo of herds of bison in the background, with a geyser in the foreground, this could be a good call.

Silex Spring

One of the main attractions of the Fountain Paint Pots at Yellowstone is the massive bubbling mud pools, Continue reading

What’s the Story Morning Glory?

We power-walked down to Morning Glory Pool in between waiting for Grand Geyser, and it was worth the walk!

Morning Glory Pool

This is possibly the most beautiful feature in the whole park. It gets its colour from bacteria which love heat, but different bacteria like different temperatures, so you can tell the temperature of the water from the colour of the bacteria that grows there. I mean, obv I can’t tell, but if you knew what you were doing, you could tell. Continue reading

What’s Old and Faithful and full of Hot Air?

If you want to see Geysers, this is The place to come! From being greeted by Old Faithful as you arrive, to the various geysers erupting at various times, this is a thrilling place to visit and can keep you entertained all day!

Castle Geyser

Old Faithful (photo below) is the best-known geyser, as it faithfully erupts roughly every 90 minutes (although the forecast depends on how long the last eruption was – but they publish the forecast at the visitors centre).  Continue reading

The Geyser at the end of the Rainbow : Norris Geyser Basin

Norris Geyser basin was the first Geyser basin we visited. We were greeted by two magnificent giant fumeroles (steam vents) emitting hot steam that smelled of egg but which also had lovely rainbows.

Norris 2

We wandered around the small boardwalk fascinated at the landscape – we could have been on the moon! Continue reading

Terrific Travertine Terraces in Mammoth

Mammoth is a cute little village, more often than not filled with Elk wandering around historical buildings. However the jewel in the crown is the amazing travertine terraces standing above the town.

Shadows

Travertine Terraces are basically limestone deposits forming shelf-like pools down a hillside. It’s kinda hard to describe – you have to see it!  And there are lots to see at Mammoth, Continue reading

Chipmunks at the Grand Canyon of Yellowstone

Entering Yellowstone National Park from the North East entrance with bright eyes and bushy tails, first on the agenda was the infamous Lamar Valley and then the northern part of the Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone.

Tower Falls

The Lamar Valley is apparently known as the “Serengeti of America”. This may well be the case, but sadly not for us. Continue reading

Driving the most Scenic Road in America

When we read that Beartooth Highway is billed the most scenic drive in the USA, we made a big detour to build this into our trip. And it didn’t disappoint; from vast glacial landscapes to lakes and pine forests, this was a lovely and varied drive.

Beartooth highway 1

We spent the night before in Red Lodge, Montana. This is a cute small town with enough amenities and life to spend an evening as a stop-over. Continue reading