3rd Oct, 2011

Yellowstone National Park – Part One –September 1 – 11, 2011

Total distance driven (includes in-city driving): 29, 526.2kms (18, 346.7 miles)
Average gas consumption: 14.3 L per 100 KM

From Grand Teton National Park we drove North on the Rockefeller Memorial Highway.

Two hours later – we arrived at Yellowstone! We were instantly amazed…

Of course we already knew about Old Faithful and that Yellowstone was a highly volcanic area. But we didn’t know that Yellowstone National Park is an active supervolcano! That’s right – this park is sitting on a huge hot spot with a magma reservoir just four to six miles below the surface.

That’s why there’s so much thermal activity in the park. Old Faithful (pictured above) is just one of 10,000+ geo thermal features within the park boundaries!

Old Faithful is the most famous – in part because it has predictable eruptions that occur frequently (about every 90 minutes, plus or minus 20 minutes). It’s also one of the most accessible Geysers because it sits right behind the visitor center.

There are Geysers galore…

…like Steamboat Geyser – which is not predictable but has eruptions that shoot 90-120 meters into the air!

In this shot Castle Geyser spouts off in the distance…

…while Plume Geyser erupts nearby.

Great Fountain Geyser is another amazing one to see. We were lucky enough to be driving by as it prepared to erupt.

The eruption itself can last up to an hour, shooting water 30-85 meters (100-200 feet) into the air!

In some places steam vents are all over…

In other places mud boils away…like this geo thermal feature named “Mud Volcano”…

…and the mud pots

Cones are another interesting geo-thermal feature…

Sediments slowly builds up causing the cone formation…

This one sits right by the edge of Yellowstone Lake. Fishing Cone (pictured above) in particular has an interesting story. Visitors used to stand near the lip, hook a fish in the lake, then pivot and cook it in the boiling water of the fishing cone hot springs!

There are also lots of pools and springs in the park…

…these waters look cool and refreshing…

…but they are all close to boiling temperatures and would seriously burn anyone who touches it. Animals, like Buffalo, do fall in and scald to death. A few of the springs have bones in the bottom from just such an event.

This one is called Dragon’s Mouth…

We loved the terraced hot springs at the Mammoth area…

The terraces are made of travertine – slowly deposited over time.

The white stuff looks like snow, but it’s actually travertine.

This little dragon fly will surely be a fossil for future generations.

Don’t worry; there are tons of live dragon flies too. Check out this red one!

We met Brian and Claudia at Mammoth. These two celebrate their anniversary by visiting a different National Park each year.

Black Pool looked amazing.

But the Grand Prismatic takes the cake…beautiful!

Next up…Yellowstone National Park – Part Two.

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I look forward to reading more of your articles and posts in the future, so I’ve bookmarked your blog. When I see good quality content, I like to share it with others. So I’ve created a backlink to your site. Thank you!…

Jason/Marianna -My wife Claudia and I met you guys in Yellowstone. I was just going through some of the papers that we collected during the trip and found your card so I looked up your site. As promised the picture you took of us was posted. This is a very well done site. I like it a lot. I’m glad that you made your way to Glacier, it is one of our favorite parks. After we saw you last we went down to the Tetons for 5 days and followed some of your suggestions. We hiked up to Lake Solitude which was great but more importantly we went to Dornan’s, the pizza place in Moose with the outdoor seating at the base of the Tetons. We liked it so much we ate there 4 nights in a row. We’ll come back to the site for further updates on your trek. Enjoy! – Brian (Chicago, IL)

So glad you wrote in! We were thinking of you two just the other day. Glad you enjoyed Dornan’s. It’s definitely one of our favorites.

Jason, your pictures are gorgeous. I am so glad you two had an amazing trip with many memories created. All the best in your job hunt. Wishing you both the best of luck in the future. Happy Holidays

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