Lions and tigers and bears, oh my! Minus the lions and tigers...
We strolled into Yellowstone to find that we had gone through a 60 degree temperature change. We were sitting at about 90 in Utah just 24 hours prior and now were cruising at a shivering 30 degrees. It was not what we were expecting. Thankfully we had a few extra layers with us just in case.
We pulled into the park - exhausted, found a campsite even though the sign on the grounds said full and set up our tent. As we were setting up camp a bison comes right through our campsite, within feet of our tent and of course this is the one time I do not have a camera. We decided to ignore our need for sleep and just head out for the day. We started off visiting Norris Geyser Basin which was near our campgrounds - I was already in love with Yellowstone. Every turn we took just gave me a new view which I loved even more than the last. We continued on and started looking for animals as we drove through the park. First one - spotted bison. I soon found out that I would see so many of these that I would almost get sick of them. We headed over towards the east entrance to see the views of Yellowstone Lake which were just stunning. Along our trip we saw many female elk which we began refering to as Felk. We were anxiously awaiting a Melk. None came. We saw also many mule deer as we drove. We continued through an area called Fishing Bridge and Hayden Valley and here began our show! First we saw a lone smaller grizzly bear tromp across the road. We were ecstatic! Our first day and we already see a bear? How cool is this?? We continue on our route... we see a ton of cars pulled off on the side of the road. What could it be? I send Rob to scope it out because its freezing cold outside. He frantically waves his arms for me to get out of the car - TWO more grizzly bears! Full grown this time and about 300 feet away from us! AMAZING! They were just hanging out in a meadow. So we are snapping pictures left and right when all of a sudden a wolf - yes a WOLF - comes out of the woods and starts creeping towards the bears. He picks up speed... [he's not going to take on two grizzly bears is he?] ....he sprints towards them and chases one off! Everyone is SILENT. Then we wait perfectly still to see what he is going to do. Can you guess?? Probably not. Because he does something none of us would have guessed. He takes a shit and then walks off. Then the second bear walks away about 5 minutes later. What?? So as this scene died down - we headed back to camp where we saw our final grizz of the night. This one was the closest. We stayed in our car for this one but I could've almost touched him had I reached out for him. An insane first day at Yellowstone to say the least!
We woke up on our second day to snow falling on our tent - freezing in our sleeping bags. It was dreadful but we were anxious to get out and see more or the park.
BOOM! we interrupt this blog post to report that we just saw a Moose while driving through Tetons! Our list is complete!!
...as I was saying, day two. We went towards Silvergate, Montana going through Lamar Valley. We had a nice lunch in Silvergate and spent a few hours just enjoying the scenery up there. As we headed back towards our campground we saw a black bear with her two cubs. We stopped and watched this for quite some time. It was so cute to watch them just run around near the river.
Our last day we saw Mammoth Hot Springs which looked kind of like icicles - it was neat. Then we did a hike up to a view of the Grand Prismatic thermal feature. We had tried to see it on our second day but it was entirely too windy so it was difficult to see the colors. Our last day was perfect, we hiked up to an overlook and got a perfect shot of the multicolored pool. It was an amazing site. We then went to our final stop before leaving Yellowstone which was Old Faithful! We got a seat right up front and waited with the hundreds of other people for the geyser to blow. Finally - right on schedule at 2:11 PM, there it went. a perfect ending to our days in Yellowstone. I am already anxious to go back.