|leaving "A Wyoming Inn", with Seamus parked under the marquis|
|on the way to Yellowstone... raindrops already litter the window|
By the time we actually got to Yellowstone, it was raining. I suppose at least the car was getting cleaned in the process (sort of). Upon entering the park, there was about a 35 mile drive or so to get to the stop sign where we would then start upon the main figure-eight-shaped loop. For those of you who don't already know, Yellowstone is freaking HUGE. Look it up on a map. Driving around the loop of the park in one direction can be over 100 miles. Therefore it seems that unless you're going to be spending a lot of time there, by car is the way to go. On the way in, immediately we were greeted by some furry friends:
Upon getting to the Lake Lodge, which was the village where we would be staying in a cabin, we found out that we were too early for check-in. We had wanted to be able to dump the bikes off the back of the car, both for security and convenience, but alas we pressed on with full cargo in tow. The lodge itself is a masterpiece, a mammoth log cabin, as I assume that's simply the best way to build things when you're out in the middle of nowhere. The Lake Lodge itself was where we also ate the majority of our meals while we were staying in the cabin... simply because it doesn't make sense to drive 60 miles to go get a meal each morning. Though, traveler beware, Yellowstone is expensive. A cabin for two people with two beds and a bathroom -- $200 a night. Each meal? Somewhere between $25 and $30 for two (which doesn't sound like a lot, but even for breakfast it was that expensive). Need gas while you're at the park? (and you will...) $4.20 a gallon. However, as my dad said, the experience is priceless. And so you open up your wallet for the opportunity to see some true magnificence.
We basically decided that today, we were going to do a half of the figure eight loop that ran inside the park. Given the inclement weather, we would save some of the more sun-necessitating things for the second day we were spending there.
With vistas aplenty to see and landmarks of all kinds, we set out into the park. We stopped at some hot springs, as Yellowstone contains tons of geothermal activity, and eventually made our way to the Grand Canyon of Yellowstone.
|steam arises from the depths as geothermal energy releases from the core|
|volcanic ground is very unstable... so the park has set up boardwalks to go around and see all the bubbling springs... though bring nose plugs because the sulphur smell is horrid!|
|mountains, plains and rivers... Yellowstone has it all|
|a random waterfall we stopped at before the canyon|
For fear of becoming too picture heavy, here is where I'll stop for now. But more will be on the way tomorrow!