Wednesday, July 21, 2010

My trip to the Grand Tetons and Yellowstone

Quick sketch from my visit to the Grand Tetons last week.

I visited Yellowstone National Park and the Grand Tetons last week and it was really beautiful. The sky was cloudless during most of my stay there and the temperature rarely went above 73 degrees according to my rental car's thermometer. During the day the sky was bright blue and windy for a couple of days leaving me mercifully bug-free during the windiest of times on the trail.

I tried to visit as many places as I could during my week there and I took the opportunity to explore as many different hiking trails as I could discover. The terrain changes vastly from the Tetons up to Yellowstone where thermal areas seem everywhere. Hence the proliferation of geysers that draw the crowds (like Old Faithful). Below is a pic I took of the "Grand Geyser" which goes off every 8-9 hours or so. I was lucky to catch it when I did.

Grand Geyser, Yellowstone National park

I also saw alot of buffalo along the roadside as well as deer, antelope and even a wolf. It was good to see animals in their natural element and not harassed or imprisoned by self-serving humans.

On one of my hikes I saw a moose with her two calves and on another hike, an antelope being pursued by a coyote. The antelope came bounding out of the woods, up the hill from me and ran down the hill, crossed my path not 5 feet from me and then disappeared down the hill. By the time the coyote arrived at the top of the hill, the antelope was long gone and the coyote turned around after seeing that it was only me left on the hillside. It all happened quite fast and I had no time to take pix.

Buffalo along the road in Yellowstone

I loved taking long hikes away from the crowds and was able to do a 9 mile hike up into Cascade Canyon and back. The trailhead for the canyon was most easily reached by taking a ferry across Jenny Lake. It was a long and beautiful hike. Lots of waterfalls and this was where I saw the moose and her calves.

Waterfall along the Cascade Canyon trail

Cascade Canyon Trail