Starting Over, Mammoth Hot Springs in Yellowstone
I have been trying to write about the past and bring the blog up to our current status, but it is hard when visiting so many exciting places. So from here on out I will slipping in some past stories when it’s boring at the present time, but for now I will give a condensed version so you are up to speed.
When I left off we were on our way to Diamond Lake to work for the rest of the summer. That was in 2011, it’s currently June 2013 and we find ourselves once again in Yellowstone National Park. In between Diamond Lake and now we have managed a pumpkin patch, a Christmas tree lot, wintered in Quartzsite, AZ, returned to Missouri for an extended period of time, ventured back to the pumpkin patch and repeated the previously mentioned cycle. Presently I am bringing you up to speed and baking cookies while listening to the rain fall outside. The guys seem to believe that cookies are required after a day of wildlife watching.
We arrived here on Saturday, managing to find a campsite that we would fit into at Mammoth Hot Springs. We spent the morning getting our campsite set up and the sidekick unloaded in anticipation of the adventures that await us. Chayton is convinced that we are here simply to make his life miserable by not having electric hookups. The horror of not having internet available at any time had him in somewhat of a panic, until our first trip out in the Sidekick.
What began as a leisurely drive through the upper part of the park brought joy and excitement around almost every curve of the road. Mammoth Hot Springs has beauty all it’s own as you drive through the small “village” that houses a majority of the parks employees. Available for your convenience is a hotel, restaurant, a few little shops and a post office. You can see the Travertine terraces from a great distance way and there is usually at least one elk enjoying the picnic area’s green grass.
At the very edge of the human neighborhood, we found our first small herd of elk. Pulling off to the side of the road so not to block traffic, we watched two, trying to understand what it was they were doing as they kept touching their noses together and then raising their heads at each other.
Traveling less than a mile down the road toward Tower, we find another group of vehicles pulled off the road, which of course meant that we had to stop as we did not want to miss anything. These guys were harder to spot, being farther from the road, but I did manage to get a snapshot of them. These Bighorn sheep decided they did not want an audience and quickly disappeared over the hill.
Traversing down the mountain side, we passed through meadows and forest, crossed creeks and past lakes until …you guessed it, another gathering of people. Jackpot!! Far down in the small valley was a Black bear scrounging around looking for lunch. He or she is hard to see at first but once you do, you just watch in awe.
We decided that was enough for one day and started back towards base camp. I am sure that everyone knows that no day trip in Yellowstone is complete without seeing at least one Bison.
So many animals in our first short trip out and we still have at least 10 day to go!