Friday, August 27, 2010

Summer Adventure 2010--Glacier to Yellowstone

Our lunch stop between Glacier National Park and Yellowstone National Park was near Three Forks, Montana. This park, designated as the headwaters of the Missouri River, memorializes many of the stories of Lewis and Clark expedition.

But, prior to Lewis and Clark's discovery that the Missouri River began at the confluence of three rivers which they named the Jefferson, the Madison, and the Gallatin, Sacajewa's tribe, the Shoshones, were gathered at this spot when, as a young girl, she was kidnapped by an enemy tribe. It was not until later during the Lewis and Clark expedition that she was reunited with her brother and the Shoshone tribe she called home.
This cliff is the place where Lewis came to scout the path his travelers would take. It gave him an overview of the beginnings of the Missouri River and the three rivers which joined to make one.
Here's Jacob on a neighboring cliff looking over one of the forks. You can guess the heighth by looking at the trees below him.
Here's that same explorer announcing our entrance to Yellowstone.
Our first night was spent at Mammoth Hot Springs, a fascinating place. Since I can't understand it myself, I won't begin to explain the hydrothermal (?) dynamics of this part of God's creation, but it is truly amazing.
Even more amazing to me, was this little killdeer walking around on this hot water on these hot rocks. Another tourist suggested the springs contain some kind of bacteris these birds love.
On our second day we had two goals--waterfalls and animals and geysers. Doesn't this picture look like a fake postcard? It isn't!
Probably our highlight was seeing this mother grizzly bear with her two cubs walking alongside us on the road. They were oblivious to all the cars and tourists stopped so close to them.
And, here's a buffalo right next to the car. Fortunately, he didn't charge!
And, down the road was this elk just resting near the side of the road. All were exciting sights for us. We were on the lookout for moose and bighorn sheep as well, but didn't have that privilege. Next time!
Our stop for the evening was Old Faithful, and true to its name it erupted like clockwork every 90+ minutes. Just down the boardwalk through the geyers was the Grand. It is the largest predictable geyser in the world. It was predicted to erupt sometime between 3:30 pm and 7:30 pm. Jacob and I sat down to watch it at 5:00, Jacob deserted me at 6:00, and it finally took off at 6:20.
I thought it was incredible, but when I asked the Ranger to rate it on a scale of 1 to 10 for what it can do, he gave it a 6 1/2! Again, maybe next time.
Have a great day!

7 comments:

Susan said...

Gorgeous!!! Thanks.

Stephanie Brandt said...

Great animal sightings! We're jealous. We didn't see a grizzly when we were there, just a couple black bears.

inda said...

I'm finally getting around to checking your blog and so glad I did so I could see your great photos. You are getting to be a keen photographer. All of your summer adventures look like great fun and a bit of learning.
Linda

Odie Langley said...

As usual the pictures were awesome and interesting that you caught a shot of a Killdeer. That is my favorite bird and so beautiful with the ring around his neck. We have many of them here in NC. Thank for sharing such beautiful pictures.
Odie

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