“And into the forest I go, to lose my mind and find my soul.” – John Muir
I was in my element this past week, immersed in the nature-y goodness of Yellowstone National Park. We got an early start our first day, stopping by the Madison River en route to the Grand Prismatic Spring, Old Faithful, and the Canyon of the Yellowstone. Trees, rivers, forests……I am in nature-nirvana!
The Grand Prismatic Spring is the largest hot spring in the U.S. and the most photographed thermal facet in Yellowstone. What I would have given to have an aerial view of the spring – a sideways glance does not do it justice.
As we waited for Old Faithful to spew, the grandson and I took a stroll around the Upper Geyser Basin enjoying the cobalt waters of the Firehole River. The river flows through several geyser basins, including Old Faithful, and temps can rise to 86 degrees.
Thar she blows……….Old Faithful erupts every hour to ninety minutes and lasts for about two and a half minutes. Besides walking the adjoining Upper Basin trails, there’s ample seating while you wait for nature’s show.
The lower falls of the Yellowstone from Artist Point
A must-see for me was the Canyon of the Yellowstone via Artist’s Point. After braving 30 minutes of bumper-to-bumper traffic through the parking lot, we nabbed a spot and joined the other billion (I’m exaggerating) folks on their way to the falls. The downside of summer travel, of course is the crowds…..and the peak-season costs.
Last stop of the day, the Virginia Cascade picnic area, for a tuna fish sandwich and some pretzels. What better way to eat lunch than at a picnic bench next to the Gibbons River!
If you can manage an early rise, you can somewhat beat the summer crowds. Later in the day, expect the roads and visitor areas to be jam-packed with lines, for both cars and people.
I really enjoyed each part of the park we visited, crowds and all. With the temperatures at home hitting 120, I truly appreciated the cooler weather, the views, and all things green and blue.