We got into Yellowstone Sunday afternoon and most places in the park were full. We were very lucky to find a tent site in the Mammoth area. From my experience national parks like Yellowstone, Yosemite and Sequoia fill up very fast in the summer. Make reservations well in advance or get there super early for first come, first served camping.
We were warned that there are bears, elk, bison and many other critters in the park. Every time Ben and I go to Yosemite we want to see a bear, but never get lucky. This time we had one very far away bear siting. This is a grizzly bear that was hanging out on the side of a mountain. You can’t really see him in this pic, but a couple let us look through their binoculars, he is there. I love him.
On the drive to Old Faithful cars were stopped on the side of the road to gawk at this beauty – a huge buffalo was super close to the road. I love him too.
My friend Terence got us a tent from our wedding registry and we were able to use it for the first time in Yellowstone. It actually started pouring super hard when we set it up. Then, as soon as we were done it stopped. Fantastic.
Check out this beauty…
These hot springs are in the Mammoth area of the park. From the brochure:
Hydrothermal features are fragile rarities of nature. Yellowstone preserves the largest hydrothermal area on the planet…Toxic gases exist in Yellowstone. Dangerious levels of hydrogen sulfide and carbon dioxide have been measured in some hydrothermal areas. If you feel sick leave the location immediately.
There are several little areas for camping, attractions, food etc. The Mammoth area where we stayed has a hotel, post office, general store, restaurant and visitor center.
The night we got in we ate at the sit down restaurant (there is also a fast food type of place, but we checked it out and it didn’t look great). Since it suddenly got super cold and rainy I grabbed some running clothes and layered up! I actually didn’t pack anything warm so I unpacked one of my clothes bags and I put on running tights on the bottom and yoga pants and 2 sweatshirts. I basically looked like a crazy. But, crazys have to eat too right?
I love that Yellowstone is committed to providing sustainable fishing and gaming cuisine to visitors. The menu had a add-on of information that explained how they provide game meat is farm raised outside of the greater Yellowstone area.
I started with some bread and butter because fresh warm bread is heaven.
I got this amazing Summer Squash soup topped with green chili. I loved it and want to recreate it at home!
I also got a salad topped with farm raised Idaho trout. But, it was smoked trout, which I just discovered that I don’t like. Oh well.
We spent Monday exploring the park. We took a short hike around the area…
Then, went to the Paint Pots. This area has more hot springs. They are so colorful and interesting. I also think it’s funny that they smell like sulfur so strong.
Old Faithful erupts more frequently than any of the other big geysers, although it is not the largest or most regular geyser in the park. Its average interval between eruptions is about 90 minutes, varying from 51 – 120 minutes. Eruptions last 1 1/2 to 5 mintues, expels 3,700 to 8,400 gallons of boiling water and reaches a height of 106 to 184 feet!
Since the next eruption was predicted for about 30 minutes from our arrival we got an ice cream to enjoy while we waited 🙂
And I left an Operation Beautiful note in the Old Faithful hotel lobby restrooms 🙂
Yellowstone was beautiful, but I did not see one yellow stone. What’s up with the name?
Oh, since this is a food/fitness blog and all…
I did not run today since I figured we’d we walking around. We did end up walking, but it wasn’t the same 🙁
We had cereal for breakfast. I added raisins and PB for staying power!
I packed a lot of goodies for snacking and lunch. I had a wrap with hummus, carrots, cherries, trail mix and those Quaker chips thingers. Normally I don’t like individual packages of “fluff” – since they don’t fill you up at all and most of the time are just empty carbs, but I was afraid to bring a whole bag of chips in the car with us because I knew we’d eat tham all in one day!
I also have a lot of Kashi Crunch bars, Fiber One bars and fruit that I’ve been snacking on.
The trailmix is a mix of almonds, cereal, raisins and dried apple chips – it really needs some chocolate chips though!
Yellowstone is absolutely beautiful, but I am still partial to Yosemite…