As mentioned yesterday, we didn’t really plan this out. We awoke this morning to a hearty snowfall, temps around 35.
After putting on four shirts and grudgingly wearing my thick socks and uncomfortable sneakers, we headed off for breakfast. Found a cute coffee shop and enjoyed a warm cuppa joe at Mountain Mama’s Cafe.
Within 5 minutes we were back in Yellowstone! Very convenient!!
Our “guide” (the Gypsy Guide app) began sharing his wealth of knowledge with us as he directed us to our first stop- the hot springs area. (Hey! Did you know that half of all the geysers in the world are concentrated in Yellowstone?)
The sights throughout the Volcanic Tableland were so reminiscent of Iceland!
The Spasm Geyser is aptly named!
Our “guide” strongly suggested we stop at the Old Faithful Lodge and check out the lobby. It was worth the stop. Really nice!!
Along the way we saw this family creating their “family tree!”
By 11 o’clock precipitation had ended. The sun tried to force its way out. It wasn’t the best of days but at least it wasn’t snowing or raining!!
Just before 12:00 we arrived at the Visitor Center for the Old Faithful Geyser. Did you know that Yellowstone has 150 geysers concentrated in one square mile?
Just in case you live under a rock and don’t know why Old Faithful was so named, it is because it faithfully erupts on a predictable schedule. There are signs throughout the Visitor Center so you can plan your viewing.
As you can see from the screenshot below, Old Faithful performed precisely as expected today. I’m not going to post a video because, frankly, you can see a better view on the Internet!! We were on the steam side so the actual geyser was obscured.
Our next stop was the Kepler Cascades. These waterfalls are spectacular!
Earlier in the day we were wondering about all the people who work in the parks. Did they drive hours to get to work every day? That seemed unlikely. So we asked. A nice young man told us they actually live in lodgings at the park for the entire season: May through October! This is his third year!!
We drove the Thumb Lake area then had lunch at the Grant Village Dining Room.
The entrance to Grand Tetons National Park was seamless as the two parks are contiguous.
We stopped at the Grand Tetons Jackson Lake Lodge. This lodge was built in 1955 and caused quite the stir. The architect had it built completely of concrete finished look like wood. His thought was that was a superior material considering many of the original wood lodges had burned!
The view from the lobby wasn’t half bad either😂
Next we stopped at the exact spot where Ansel Adams took his iconic picture of the Grand Tetons with the Snake River in the foreground. I tried to recreate the shot. Let’s just blame the iPhone for the poor job😂😂Our next stop was Mormon’s Row. In the late 1800s, there was a Mormon settlement there. All that remains are 6 houses and a barn. It’s pretty cool to see though
We drove through the Elk Refuge (without seeing any elk!) which was created years ago after hundreds (maybe thousands?) of elk starved to death after several harsh winters.
We left the park and entered Jackson, Wyoming around 4:30 p.m. The first thing you see in Jackson are four arches on the corners of Jackson Hole’s Town Square.
We continued on through the Teton Pass and the Targhee National Forest.
We arrived in Idaho at 5:10! Truthfully, the main reason we took this route was because neither of us had ever been to Idaho and we wanted to add it to our list of states. We have now visited 33 states!
The view from our room at the Le Ritz Hotel in Idaho Falls was very nice.
Tomorrow we head south back to Boulder, Colorado. We plan to stop for the night about halfway in Rock Springs, Wyoming. Not sure whether we will see anything “blog worthy” but I’ll post anyway!!