Wednesday, September 25, 2013

:: wait for it... vacation. part. three ::

Don't you love to linger over vacation? I feel like that is happening for me with how much time there is between each vacation post. Perhaps you would rather that I rush through and quit re-living this vacation? Well too bad, there are too many pictures I like so I can't cut them out! 

Beginning our day July 27. 
Set against the backdrop of trees and hillside, the steam from the hot springs is beautiful. 
Kooi family in front of the Gibbons Falls 

 A hop, skip, and a jump-- enjoying herself on the trail.

Oh dear, DEER! We were pretty close to these deer. In all there were about 6 or 7 of them along the stream.

Celestine Pool. --you can see under the steam that it is boiling! 

 Spasm Geyser. In this picture you can see that it is erupting. It may be a little bit hard to tell because the steam and the water are the same color! 

The picture may not show it, but this area is all wet. I wondered how warm the water was. This shows the Bacterial Mats (you can tell by the colors, the yellows and oranges).
I thought it was pretty cool that you can see the hoof prints from the bison. I guess the water isn't too hot here and the ground is fairly stable too as those are big heavy animals! 

 Firehole Spring
 loving the reflections

 Excelsior Geyser -- this baby was big.
 Grand Prismatic
This was even bigger than the one before. The Grand Prismatic really is grand. I love this picture for many reasons:
-the steam
-the reflection
-the colors
-It shows in the background the hill we climbed up later to get more of an overhead pic 
(more to come in another post. definitely worth checking back for!!)
Back to reality: these geothermal sites do smell like sulfur. p-u. 

Hiking to Mystic Falls: 1.2 miles

Away from the sulfer smell, and now looking for animals! 

The beautiful falls. While resting here we saw a cute chipmunk and a yellow bellied marmot. I didn't get to check his belly so I don't really know if it is yellow.

Then it started to sprinkle and I really wanted to get off the trail before it started to pour. So we left. 

Evidence that the bison are near. They like to take the bark off of the trees. The reason is somewhat up for debate: some say it is to mark territory, others say to help them shed their winter coats.

Off the trail and back on the boardwalk. This is called Shell Spring. There really is water in there but it is not really visible in the picture. (We did see it bubble around in there.) My kids thought it should be named something like Marshmallow Spring because it looks a bit like toasted marshmallows. 
Old Faithful! Because the color of the sky and clouds is so close to the color of the water and steam it is hard to tell but Old Faithful really is erupting in this picture. We waited to see it for about 10 minutes or so. The crowd gathered was surprising to me-- there were probably 1000 people waiting for the eruption. Wow. And then it happened, just like they said it would. 

Just to prove we were there when it happened. 

So many great sights. God's world is amazing. 

We even hit a ranger talk. This guy was talking about why there is "no fishing" off of the bridge in the background that is called "Fishing Bridge". Those rangers have all the answers! 

Standing in a line on Fishing Bridge. 
On our way back home we encountered trouble.
Thankfully we were reminded not to try to pet the furry things. 
Instead we watched as they meandered together, letting the occasional bird catch a ride.
...and we watched as they tried to get the birds and the bugs and their winter coats off!

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