National Treasures

After a couple of weeks on the road, generally trying to get far enough west to make Tadd smile… we made it to our first National Park…. Yellowstone!! We have been really excited about checking out some the amazing natural areas of the U.S.

We drove in through the east gate, and luckily something triggered Tadd’s memory and he got us hooked up with an interagency pass getting us into all the National Parks and more for just $80USD for a whole year… SCORE!!!

We climbed up and over the Sylvan Pass and finally got our first glimpse of what lay ahead.

 

The View West into the Heart of Yellowstone
The View West into the Heart of Yellowstone
sm_Yellowstone_0350
Sylvan Lake
sm_Yellowstone_0351
Continued Good Luck with the Weather!

Having passed a crowd on the main road (apparently there a mother brown bear and her cub had been spotted…. but no sign of them by the time we got there), we stopped off a few miles into the park for our first hike of the day at Indian Pond, along Storm Point trail.

sm_Yellowstone_0352
Our First Sight of the Immense Yellowstone Lake

Happily this was not a popular spot, so we had the whole trail to ourselves… or so we thought!

 

sm_Yellowstone_0354
This Guy Took Little Notice of Us

 

sm_Yellowstone_0356
Just Stunning

After a quick stop at the visitors center, and lunch on the side of the road, we set off to bike the trail to Natural Bridge… finally an actual bike trail!

sm_Yellowstone_0358
A Bit More of a Trek Than We Thought, but Worth the Effort

sm_Yellowstone_0360

Of course, no trip to Yellowstone would be complete without a visit to Old Faithful (well, at least when it’s your first visit!)

sm_Yellowstone_0363

Actually Rather Impressive

We stopped in to the Lodge and the Inn to explore the classic hotels

sm_Yellowstone_0382
The Hallway Lights Were Cool

And then a little further north we reached the Grand Prismatic…

Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming, USA --- Grand Prismatic Spring --- Image by © Pete Saloutos/CORBIS
Image by © Pete Saloutos/CORBIS
sm_Yellowstone_0391
I Like the Closeup Colors and Patterns for Change
sm_Yellowstone_0392
Mars?

As we wound our way back over the Continental Divide for the 5th time… we fit in a quick stop for a waterfall.

sm_Yellowstone_0394
Kepler Cascade

From here it was time to head south out of the park, on another whirlwind taster of U.S. and out into the spectacular Grand Tetons.

sm_Grand Teton_0400
Finally A Little More Than Just Yellow

And then we turned the corner…

sm_Grand Teton_0397
Grand Teton National Park

I had found us another free campsite in the Bridger-Teton National Forest just off the main road a few miles to the east…

They Said The View Was Good...
They Said The View Was Good…

Free Camping!

Given the amazing location and the fact that Tadd owns an original print taken somewhere just below us in the valley, we renamed the spot “The Ansel Adams Campsite,” Moran, WY.

 

Certainly Not An Adams