cross country skiing
Established in 1872, Yellowstone National Park is America's first national park. Located in Wyoming, Montana and Idaho, it is home to a large variety of wildlife including grizzly bears, wolves, bison, and elk. Preserved within Yellowstone National Park are Old Faithful and a collection of the world's most extraordinary geysers and hot springs, and the Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone.
After Norris Geyser Basin, we went up the road toward Mammoth, getting out to see a big elk in the meadow, a bison dusting itself next to the road, a coyote crossing the road, and then past Obsidian Cliff and Sheepeater Cliff, where we ate peanut butter sandwiches and had a brief lunch in the van. Sheepeater is a rock formation just like the Devil's Postpile monument in California, formed as basalt lava erupts from volcanic vents and cools, then shrinks and cracks. Sometimes vertical columns form. Well developed columns result from homogeneous lava cooling at a uniform rate - hence, Sheepeater Cliffs. Past Sheepeater the park opens up into a wide plain where we viewed a herd of about eight elk, we saw Bunsen Peak on the right (nice 4 mile RT hike next time), Electric Mountain on the left, and entered the Golden Gate pass from one terrain into the next, from wide plains into a canyon, with a road right along the cliff walls suspended over the canyon. Yellowstone is amazing, with geothermal features, wildlife and lots of exploring to do. And don't forget it's been 60,000 years since it last erupted... enjoy!
A great trail to show the main features of what makes Yellowstone unique. My favorite geyser is Grand Geyser, so if the prediction is close, get over there. it is SO worth it
On an overcast day, we did the amazing boardwalk loop and saw elk at the visitor center. The best view is from the top of the steps on the right, where you are up close and personal as the cascade of oozing seeping rock-forming liquid pours over the cliff face, creating more interesting formations. The thermal and geological features of this park are absolutely surreal. Enjoy!