[title] Yellowstone Visit, July 2009 To Craig, Colorado, and home to Kansas

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Photos, 2009 © Carol Yoho

 

On Tuesday morning we took a leisurely departure from Cody, having slept late from a long, eventful day on Monday. We stopped to enjoy several bronze sculptures we'd seen from the road before, all near our cabin, but had not stopped to look at yet.

Shortly after leaving town we stopped at the Shoshoni River Dam where I photographed some industrial pieces once used at the dam. I knew my husband, Max (a retired machinist), would enjoy. The shear scale of the work was impressive. He did the photos.

Tues.: Leaving Cody, WY.
farewell to Cody from our cabin trapper and Indian guide from rear trapper and Indian guide from side
bear and eagle fight momma bear protects her cubs cowboy lassoes elk, low view cowboy lassoes elk, front view
Shoshoni Dam area cableway wench, manufactured in St. Paul, MN plunger once used at the spillway large wooden ballplug high water near dam, Shoshoni River

I thought we only had some 39 miles to travel to the eastern park entrance, but it was considerably further. We enjoyed beautiful scenery along the way, stopping at a lodge, full of tourist temptations, just outside of the park.

Traffic slowed to a crawl and stopped and started as we neared the east gate of Yellowstone. There is a fee to enter, but it is good for multiple days and we got a senior discount. (Yeah for age!)

It was midafternoon before we stopped for lunch at Fishing Bridge Lodge, near Lake Yellowstone Hotel, where we had reservations.

The park is full of good places to pull over, stop, and gawk at the wildlife and scenic wonders. We didn't see wildlife upon entering the park, but would see many wonderful beasts and birds before our day was over.

Tues.: Into Yellowstone from the east
between Cody and Yellowstone 1 outcropping with wildflowers wide river rocky outcroppings
private lodge just east of Yellowstone entrance columbine eastern Yellowstone, snowy peaks visable dead pines caused by pine beetles
stopping in Yellowstone curving highway in the mountains site of old road at Yellowstone rocky outcropping, Yellowstone snowy peak 2, Yellowstone
Warning about bears falls Lake Yellowstone Lake Yellowston, marshy view
panorama of Lake Yellowstone

We got hungry and stopped at Fishing Bridge Lodge at Yellowstone, eating all-beef hotdogs at their lunch counter. The place had everything a tourist could possibly desire, including several choices of moose socks.

Tues.: Fishing Bridge Lodge
tourist mecca 1 tourist mecca 2 lunch counter at Fishing Creek Lodge definitely a Teddy Bear
tourist mecca 3 tourist mecca 4 tourist mecca 5 all the moose socks you could hope for natural stonefireplace Fishing Bridge Lodge

We stayed in a cabin at the Lake Yellowstone Hotel, at the north end of the largest lake in the park. When the hotel was new guests used to arrive via paddleboat at the lake's dock.

Our cabin had no phone, no television, no internet. But the natural woods setting was beautiful.

We had a momma bird nesting in the arch of our porch awning.

Interior detailing at the hotel was nice. I think many park employees (many of them college students) live at this hotel for the tourist season.

Tues.: Lake Yellowstone Hotel
lounge, Lake Yellowstone Hotel lakefront entrance, Lake Yellowstone Hotel tree trunk and wildflowers, hotel front Yellowstone taxi
our cabin is at photo right view from our porch, cabin momma bird, in arch of our porch awning Lake Yellowstone view from front of hotel lake seat
now lounge, used to be dining hall lake view from lounge fireplace from lobby fireplace detail fountain, Lake Hotel

We settled in our cabin at about 3 p.m., then decided to use the rest of the day to sightsee. We'd planned to drive to the northeast corner of the park, where we'd heard, in Cody, we would see salmon and otters in a lake there.

We saw some glorious mountains, shear rock cliffs, waterfalls, and areas deforested due to forest fires in 1988.

Regularly we found places to pull aside and park to look the the magnificent views. All of the clear air and mountain spires were enough to impress this gal from the Great Plains of Kansas!

Tues.: Exploring Yellowstone, north and west
Sulphur Caldron bubbling caldron suphur pool terraces display sign
wildflowers and downed trees deep falls falls from bird's eye view bison backside
hard rock 1 hard rock 2 rocky surface high point forest fire damage Winds of Change
falls and river falls high point, above the treesmountains of Yellowstone
vista point
zoom photo of scenery
vista

We zigged when we should have zagged and found ourselves headed toward the northwest corner of the park by accident.

In that way we "stumbled" upon Mammoth Hot Springs.

Plenty of other tourists had found this natural wonder. There were cars, vans and bus-loads of visitors. I heard German, French, Spanish and Chinese being spoken as I walked along the wooden trail paths, around pools of steaming water and rivulets of runoff waters which cascaded down outcropping of minerals deposited from deep within the earth.

The town of Mammoth was beside the springs. We stopped there and treated ourselves to a supper of ice cream...not so nourishing, but tasty.

At this spot we were about as far away from home as we were to travel. The Kia's trip meter told us we'd traveled 1300 miles from Rossville, Kansas. I figured, later, we'd traveled a total of 2600 miles to get home from Mammoth Hot Springs, WY.

Tues.: Mammoth Hot Springs
walkways at Mammoth Hot Springs, Yellowstone Mammoth pool high walk at Mommoth Hot Springs mineral settlement rough terrain
mineral settlement 1 mineral settlement 2 mineral waters Carol with ancient earth debris
lunar landscape on earth Mammoth wonders mineral settlement 2 Oriental family enjoy Mammoth
cone water terrace bird salvages
a meal treat of ice cream looking toward parking steaming holes beside the highway

We traveled in a couterclockwise loop from Yellowstone Lake on our afternoon and evening trip.

We returned through the northwest portion of the park, then east through the park's center, back to a commercial space, called Canyon Village, before turning south toward our cabin.
See Yellowstone Park Map.

Suddenly traffic on the highway came to a standstill while motorists waited for bison to cross the road. A lead bison, ambling north, stepped into the Yellowstone River, swam across, climbed out on the other side, shook himself (much like a dog would shake away water), then headed off into the woods. Eventually the whole herd followed the leader. Finally traffic started moving again as dusk set in. This unexpected display was a highlight of our trip.

Tues.: Traffic jam
bison traffic jam bison snorts as he passes bison has passed us
bison herd in the meadow starting to cross the Yellowstone River
herd in mid-swim herd has crossed to the other side. Stunning sight.

All photos © 2009 by Carol Yoho
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