Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Part 1 - Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming

All photos will enlarge when clicked on

Yellowstone National Park, was established by US Congress on March 1,1872, and is America's first national park. It is located primarily in the state of Wyoming, with small sections located in Montana, and Idaho.

We spent three days visiting the park, and I took hundreds of photos. It was hard to chose just a few of them to show in my blog, so I've decided to make this part of a three part post, so that I can display the special highlights of our visit in an easier viewing format.

Yellowstone National Park spans an area of 3,468 square miles, and is comprised of lakes, canyons, rivers and mountain ranges.

Almost immediately upon driving into the eastern entrance of the park, we came upon this bison in the road, ambling slowly along towards his destination! Yellowstone is home to a large variety of wildlife, including grizzly bears, wolves, bison, elk, pronghorn antelope and moose.

Yellowstone Lake is one of the largest high-altitude lakes in North America, with an elevation of 7,733 feet above sea level and is centered over the Yellowstone Caldera, the largest super volcano on the continent. Many geothermal areas were evident along the lake shore.


A lone bison walking along the river bank.


A view of Yellowstone Lake. Yellowstone has numerous recreational opportunities, including hiking, camping, boating, fishing and sightseeing. Paved roads provide close access to the major geothermal areas as well as some of the lakes and waterfalls. During the winter, visitors often access the park by way of guided tours that use either snow coaches or snowmobile.

Yellowstone takes its name from the translated Native American name for the "Rock Yellow River," now known as Yellowstone River.

Rapids on the Yellowstone River.

A portion of Yellowstone is really a caldera, which was formed by the largest volcanic system in North America. It has been termed a "supervolcano" because the caldera was formed by exceptionally large explosive eruptions. Hydrogen sulfide and carbon dioxide are toxic gases that can be found in some areas, and you can feel the hydrothermal heat if you are close to any of the formations.

This unusual formation was named "Dragon's Mouth Spring" in 1912, because steam hitting inside the caves walls sounds like a breathing beast, and there are occasional spurts of water erupting from the mouth.

Enlarge to read information.

The Upper Falls of the Grand Canyon of Yellowstone fall 109 feet.

The Lower Falls, located in Yellowstone's Grand Canyon, and 308-feet long, is the biggest waterfall in Yellowstone, and the most famous. It is the second most photographed feature of Yellowstone, after the Old Faithful geyser. It is easy to see why, as the bright blue water drops in a thunderous cascade over the cliff into the bottom of the bright yellow hued canyon. Countless artists have painted this view!

I wish you could hear the sound! A wonderful Youtube video of the falls can be seen at this link.




There were many different viewing areas to view the falls, and each one was breathtaking! Enlarge this photo to see visitors standing at a viewpoint along the rim.

Prior to the establishment of the National Park Service, the U.S. Army protected Yellowstone between 1886 and 1918. Fort Yellowstone was established at Mammoth Hot Springs for that purpose. Many of the historic structure remain today.

In the Mammoth Hot Springs area of Yellowstone, the main attraction are the terraces created by heat, water, limestone, and rock fracture, combined to create the other-worldly landscapes.

The Mammoth Hot Springs are constantly changing. As formations grow, water is forced to flow in different directions. The constant changes in water and mineral deposits create a living sculpture.

Calcium carbonate forms travertine, which is deposited as white rock, and then microorganisms and bacteria in it create beautiful shades of oranges, pinks, yellows, greens, and browns.

Yellowstone National Park is truly a place like no other! Its size, its natural beauty, and all its unique features were all astounding. I hope you join me for my next blog post which will show more photos of the beauty and grander of Yellowstone National Park.
I am adding my post today to Susan of A Southern Daydreamer blog's "Outdoor Wednesday" event, # 37. Please visit Susan's blog today to see links to other wonderful outdoor themed blog posts.

29 comments:

Riet said...

Stunning pictures of a beautiful country. I am looking forward to part 2
Have a nice day

Hootin' Anni said...

Been there so many times as a kid and then took MY kids there, I could probably map it in my sleep!! Love!!the bison photo!!!!

My Wednesday meme photo is now posted. Come on over......

Ciao Chow Linda said...

Pat - You bring back memories of when we took our kids there. Your photos are spectacular. You really captured the essence beautifully.

Melanie said...

Such wild beauty. I am so glad it is protected.

Oh waterfalls- power and beauty together. Irresistable. I watched the video link.

I am so enjoying this catch up of your hols.

Thoughtfully blended hearts said...

Great post and I'm looking forward to more ...

pammiejo said...

That country is fabulous - the artwork of God! It's been fun to see you cross the same territory we did in July - see it through your eyes! PAM

imjacobsmom said...

Pat, Great choice of pix. It's been ages since I've been through Yellowstone. I lived in Billings, MT for about 2 years in the 80's. Needless to say, we were the only relatives that ever moved out of state so we were the vacation destination for all! I could have been a professional tour guide for the park, by the time they all came out west! I would love to go back, I'm sure Jacob would love it. I see you got up close and personal with a Bison that's pretty cool. Looking forward to the rest of your series. ~ Robyn

Gracie said...

When I was a kid I knew about Yellowstone thanks to the Yoghi cartoons! Since then I always dreamed about visiting it one day. Now thanks to you I'm doing it, at least virtually!

Jenny said...

Oh beautiful, beautiful! Or would that be "oh beautiful for spacious skies"? Our daughter worked for a season at Yellowstone and driving up to bring her home was one of my best memories. The amazing vistas (so well captured by your photography) are still in my heart. Thanks for the trip back.

Lily Hydrangea said...

thanks for the amazing tour. my friend just came back from Yellowstone, now I have an idea what she experienced. I am going to send her your link.

Judy ~ My Front Porch said...

You captured it beautifully, Pat! You had me right back in Yellowstone Park...the sights, the sounds and the feel of the place. It is an amazing park.

aliceinparis said...

Fantastic!!! I always think of Yogi bear. "Jellystone Park" What a great place and amazing to be so close to a bison. Great pics!!

Tracy @ Comfort and Luxury said...

Wow. Isn't it fantastic that such places exist in our country? When you start feeling too crowded in by the cities and suburbs, a long drive or a short flight is all it takes to find a wide open space... even here in So Cal and from where you live in NY.
What fierce creature that bison is! I wouldn't want to cross his path outside of my car!

Claudia@DipityRoad said...

I am originally from Montana-- just around the corner (lol a littl bit)

You have captured some fantastic shots... and that buffalo in the road is a normal occurance... i remember following one up a highway for hours... only going about a mile or two... *sigh* but it was fun.

If you get a chance please stop by and say hi!

TTFN~~Claudia ♥ ♥

Mary said...

Your photos are spectacular. It's been 30 years since I set foot in the park. Your photos brought back some pleasant memories. I hope you are having a wonderful day.

Diane@A Picture is Worth.... said...

You sound like me with the pics...I took over 800 last summer on our trip!

The ones you chose to feature in this post are awesome. I hope to get to travel to Yellowstone one day!

storyteller at Sacred Ruminations said...

Thanks for the virtual walk down memory lane. It's been YEARS since I've visited Yellowstone but I recall it being absolutely amazing and your photos are marvelous indeed.
Hugs and blessings,

Bill said...

Hi Pat,
I SO enjoyed seeing your stunning images of Yellowstone! You're an excellent guide, always sharing such fascinating and educational information. Excellent job ... looking forward to Part 2!

Regards,
Bill

Ms. Bake-it said...

Hello Pat,

What stunning photos! I have always wanted to visit Yellowstone National Park, but so far have not managed it. Thank you so much for the fabulous and informative tour! I am looking forward to Part 2!

~ Tracy

CatHerder said...

I spent the day at Round Valley Reservoir taking beautiful pics today...then i looked at YOURS!! YOU WIN!!! :-) beautiful pics!!

Proud Italian Cook said...

The hubby and I just checked out all your pic's Pat, and he's ready to pack right now!

Sue said...

I always love coming to your blog....Your like a one women history lesson....I get to visit all the places I can't go to thru you....Thank you!! and thanks for the pizza articles too...!

Joyce said...

I love my arm chair traveling. You are the best tour guide.
Joyce

Ebie said...

Hi Pat, you are wonderful virtual tour guide, make me want to visit! Your photos are just wonderful!

Tracy said...

Spectacular views, Pat! The West really has a special beauty you can't find anywhere else...This is sensational! So glad you had a chance to see all this glory!:o) Happy Day ((HUGS))

Laura @ the shorehouse. said...

I am just dying to get to Yellowstone!! It is one place I've always wanted to go. I'm a skier, so any time I'm out west there's usually snow involved. :-) I need to get out there in the summer months one of these days.

Great, great pictures!

GMG said...

Incredible bison, fabulous Lower Falls and the wonderful Mammoth Hot Springs. You're reproducing me 1982 tour; I'm thrilled!!

Oliag said...

I just started watcheeng the PBS special on our national parks this week and I have come to realize I must see Yellowstone Park...then I read this...what a wonderful vacation you had!...were you camping or staying in hotels?

Vee said...

I'm going back to listen to the video...I can imagine the roar. The formations at the end looked like drifted snow...fascinating.