- Izhar Bar-Gad
Yellowstone national park
Our experience with Yellowstone National Park started in our cabin on the west side of Glaciers NP and the looooooong drive from it. We woke up early for the drive of 700 km with a net driving time of 7.5 hours. Of course, the difference between the net time and the actual time is large even for regular families but is even higher in our non-focused, attention deficit family. After less than an hour we stopped in the local huckleberry festival, which was a cute local patriotic event, we dined on huckleberry pancakes, huckleberry pies and chatted with the local artisans. We continued in such a manner through local communities and a wonderful local diner in the middle of nowhere driving through the wilderness of Montana where a group of ten or more houses is considered a town or even a city.
We enter Wyoming and the park and made it around 8PM to our Old Faithful lodge in the middle of the park and got upgraded to a nice cabin. We enjoyed our lodging in the park itself by having a sunset stroll between the geysers.
The next morning we woke up for a morning run between the geysers, a unique experience which left the surrounding travelers quite shocked. The geysers are impressive and each one seems to have a personality of his own, the proud Old Faithful, the forceful Grand geyser and the shy little geysers or gurgling or hissing steam holes. Between the Upper Basin geysers and the Midway Basin geysers we walked 30,000 steps (Shibolet's new watch is counting them all) and so we barely made it to our night camping in West Yellowstone.
The next morning, with fresh energies and headed to Mammoth Hot Springs which has multiple terraces generated by the hot water flow which has thermophile bacteria of all colors painting it with many colors. We were amazed by the cycle of life: new springs start and form new pools and terraces in shining colors while others dry up (sometimes overnight) leaving dead terraces and pools which change their color to white. It is a unique state in which life and death of natural elements can be viewed on a "human time-frame" and not over millions of years.
Next we headed to the Yellowstone Grand Canyon in which we hiked (and drove) to the Upper & Lower falls and the spectacular looks of the colorful canyon walls from the Artist & Inspiration viewpoints. We even managed to get a glimpse of the surrounding wildlife we met bison, elk, geese and chipmunks but (sadly, or not so sadly) bears. We bid the park goodbye and continued our southbound trail.