Monday, September 14, 2015

Yellowstone: Vivid, Vibrant & Wild!

Five days in Yellowstone National Park is not nearly enough to see the entire park, but it is plenty of time to get a good taste of all the wonders in this special place. There's lots of driving between sights, plenty of crowds at the most popular sights, but it's surprisingly easy to evade the crowds early in the morning or once you step on the trail, and the wildlife...the wildlife watching is superb!

Grab a cup of your favorite beverage and take a photographic journey with us as we tour Yellowstone National Park!

Cool mornings = steamy views

Lower Falls, Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone River
on our third anniversary as nomads, September 10th!

It is a serious workout down and back up the stairs to view the Lower Falls!

Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone.

Porcelain Basin at Norris Geyser Basin.

Colorful reflections at Porcelain Basin.

Coyotes at play.

Grizzly seen from the road during our first Bear Jam.

We hiked Pelican Valley one day with new friends Howard and Lauren of Nosh Bus fame. Known as one of the best grizzly sighting areas in the park, we were not disappointed!

A bison lies right on our trail in Pelican Valley...we had to make a big detour around this large fellow!

Lisa, Hans, Lauren and Howard....with our road block in the background!

Grizzly at 300 yards in Pelican Valley!
We got to watch this guy for a good long time, so exciting!

Sandhill Cranes in Pelican Valley.

At West Thumb Geyser Basin there are geysers right on the edge of Yellowstone Lake.

Seeing stars at West Thumb Geyser Basin.

Short loop drives off the main highway always gave us neat surprises. Gull Point Drive gave us an opportunity to walk along Yellowstone Lake where I saw a bald eagle fly off then we noticed this large eagle whom we tracked as it worked at a fish carcass. I believe it is an immature bald eagle.

Picking up a fish head.

What a handsome fellow!

The colors and textures at each geyser are mesmerizing!

This raven beauty was having a lot of fun hanging around the geysers near Old Faithful.

The crowds at the most popular sights really start to get overwhelming by 11am so on one long driving day we took Fountain Flat Drive in search of a short hike away from the masses.

A Bison Jam slowed our progress down Fountain Flat Drive where we saw these crazy people getting way too close to the wildlife. They were surprised when we told them that four people had been gored this summer by standing within six feet of bison!

Once we parked at the end of Fountain Flat Drive in no time at all we were all alone on an unnamed trail. 

Lots of bubbling sounds coming from this mud pot. 

Hans' view down inside the mud pot.

This peaceful area had us captivated for a good long time.

We found all sorts of wonderful things on this completely unmarked, trail!

A lighting strike fire broke out in the middle of the park one day during our stay.
Each afternoon the smoke cloud would grow ominous, each morning it had receded.

On Firehole Canyon Drive we discovered a swimming hole!
Though we were not prepared to swim it sure looked like a great place to take a dip!

These two young girls jumped into this scary looking rapids over and over.

This was a very unique find on the the easy Storm Point Trail...a bat!

Another Bear Jam sighting!
We learned that wolves had taken down a large mammal over night and several bears and wolves had been seen feeding on the carcass on this morning. We were fortunate to observe this guy for half an hour, he was probably 200 yards away.

We're off to the Tetons today...with a few days of rain in the forecast...perhaps we'll get snow on the mountains!


  1. We have been to Yelliwstone many times and you captured it perfectly. Thanks for the virtual tour.

  2. What a beautiful post Lisa. Capturing the immature eagle is so exciting along with the bison drinking water. The amazing wonders of nature and all its creatures. The photos of Porcelin Basin look like watercolor paintings....amazing!
    Happ "nomad" anniversary. And I can't wait to see the Tetons through your lens...we haven't been there! What a picturesque way to start your fourth year.

  3. Wow. Glad Hans got to see this magical place.

  4. Beautiful park...great photos guys! We were there for a couple of days in late April. Well before the busy season, and yet there were still quite a few people. Wouldn't want to be there in mid July!

  5. Great photos of Yellowstone! The crowds there spoiled it a bit for us, though, and we found we liked Grand Teton NP better.

  6. Wow, these pictures are just incredible! You guys did Yellowstone proud! I haven't been there in 20 years, and that was in winter. Looking forward to exploring it more in depth one day, and hopefully seeing some of the same beauty you found! Just WOW!

  7. You really did see a lot of critters during your visit - love the little bat!! Can't believe people are still so stupid around wild animals :-( The different colors in the geysers are amazing and beautiful. Such a bonus to find a trail to enjoy to yourselves. Thanks for climbing up to get the pics of the falls for me :-)))

  8. Great photography! We have to go back, when we were there it rained and was overcast most of the time. It was very disappointing weather. Thanks for showing us what we missed.

  9. Gorgeous pictures ! We've been there in '98 tent camping where we almost freeze our butts off during the night. Time for us to go back and stay longer. Enjoyed your pictures a lot !

  10. Awesome photos! You were so lucky to see so much wildlife. Now I want to go to Yellowstone...

  11. Your gorgeous and incredible captures, brought lots of memories of our time there and more. And maybe its time for a revisit! Your title says it all ! Its a WOW!
    Both you and Hans looked happy as ever even after three nomad years together. Here is to more happy and exciting nomadic years.

  12. Your wildlife photos and information about the park are wonderful. :) I've never seen a immature bald eagle. Thank for the wildlife shots.

  13. Wonderful photos! Tose pics of the Firehole River swimming hole brought back memories of when I was a girl. The wildlife photos were beautiful!

  14. I'm amazed at that no name trail and all you saw. How did you find it? We were in Yellowstone for 2 weeks and never saw a grizzly. Of course we didn't go on any hikes where we might be in their territory but it looks like you were out in the open. I'd feel more comfortable there. Amazing that you saw so much in such a short time. Your pictures of all are just fantastic. The colors magnificent. Thanks for posting this I really enjoyed it.

    1. It was really just luck finding that little trail. From the Fountain Flat wide gravel path we just turned left before the river and, voila!, bison, mud pots, springs...gorgeous!

  15. Glad you saw so much. Did you make it to the top of Mt. Washburn? We were there two weeks and still felt we had a lot more hiking to do. We also took the boat tour out onto Lake Yellowstone. That was very fascinating.

    Enjoy Grand Tetons!

    1. Unfortunately I tweaked my back so we had to pass on Mt Washburn and do much easier hikes.

  16. What an exciting visit to an amazing place. And you saw so many bears!

  17. How wonderful. I have not been to Yellowstone yet, but it's certainly on the list. Your photos are gorgeous!

  18. Thanks for taking me back:) We've been there three time but it is never enough. The last time with ten days we were able to do a few longer hikes as well as see everything else. I don't think people realize how far everything in the park is. This is a HUGE place. But you didn't need to do long hikes this trip. Yellowstone has so much to see that hiking is secondary. Aren't the pools just magnificent! And the wildlife...oh, my! Glad you got to see some bears during your stay:) People are do dumb! I couldn't believe those people with the bison! One year we got trapped out on the boardwalk at the Mud Volcano with bison on the boardwalk one way and a group sparring next to the other way. Needless to say, those of us out there were a little worried. Hope your back is feeling better:) Take it slow:)

  19. Great pics! Can't way to see your post on Grand Tetons!

  20. Even after living there for two years I feel there is still so much to see in Yellowstone. Thanks for the beautiful memories and the gorgeous photos. Glad you got to experience Pelican Valley while you were there.

  21. WoW. Amazing pictures! I've never seen that many bears in YS at once. Really love the colors and designs you captured! Great grizzly standing up. Just so cool!

  22. We spent 10 days in Yellowstone a couple of years ago in late September -- no crowds, but we did get a bit of snow. Your wonderful photos bring back great memories. Love that you captured everything from the enormous bison and bears to the little bats. And your raven photo is so fun! Happy third year on the road -- love following along with your journey, and hoping we can cross paths sometime soon.

  23. What a great roundup of your time here! We got close to you, but ended up with just a few days here n the west side. Didn't kńow there was a swimming hole in the canyon. Nice find!

  24. Fantastic collection of photographs. I've thoroughly enjoyed your last several posts and can't wait to explore some of these places. Thanks for such a great tour.