Yellowstone National Park is America's first national park.  Matter of fact, it is the first and oldest national park in the world.  The area was discovered by John Colter who gave the area the name, "Colter's Hell".  It was a great idea to change the name.
On the way to Yellowstone National Park, I drove through two other national parks.  The scenery was spectacular.  I drove up mountain tops to see snow and into valleys to see rivers.

 

The air was cold and crisp.

I thought it was odd to see snow in July.

Snowy mountains with a little lake.

After driving around the mountainous sharp curves, it was time to step out and take a trail to over look where I have been and where we are going.

It had to be around 30 to 40 degrees with snow nearby.  It was cold wearing shorts and a T-shirt.

Here is the view from lookout point.

Another view out lookout point.

... and another view.

As I drove into Yellowstone, I saw a buffalo resting near the road.  Unfortunately I couldn't stop and take his picture.  Here is a shot of a couple buffaloes in the field.

As I drove south, I headed for the more familiar areas of Yellowstone.

Here I walked around hot bubbling pools of water.  You could see the steam rising off of the water and feel the heat as you walked by.  The air temperature was around 70 degrees.  The wind would blow the heat around and you would get a nice warm blast from the pools as you walked by.

This pool looks like a Jacuzzi, but the heat would boil you alive.

Here is a walkway out to about five nice sized geysers in the Lower Geyser Basin.  You had to make sure that you stayed on the walkway.  If you stepped onto the sand there is a good chance you will sink down into a tunnel filled with hot gases, steam or water.

This pair of geysers would sometimes shoot up in time with each other.  You had to catch it just right if you wanted a photo.

Another shot of these geysers.

Here is a picture of what is referred to as the Fountain Paint Pots.  The liquid looks like different colors of paint.  This paint pot in the foreground looked like hot cocoa.  The liquid looked like it was boiling.  As you can see in this picture, the liquid was very active.  There are two more paint pots in the background.

Here is one huge paint pot.  It was a bit too bright to get a good picture.  Some of the liquid was soupy and dancing up in the air as it bubbled up out of the mixture.  Some of the liquid was visibly boiling and bubbling.

Here are a couple of fumaroles.  These just vent hot air from underground.  They also make a rushing air sound.  The air is quite hot.

Here is a view of the front of the Old Faithful Inn.  It is made of wood found in Yellowstone.  It is quite old and is a popular place to stay.

The inside atrium of the Inn is very spectacular.

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The fireplace, made of stone, has eight fireplaces around its square shape.  There are four on the flat surfaces and four on each corner.  It must be nice to sit around the fire in the dead of winter.

Here is a view of the back of the Old Faithful Inn.

If you turn around 180 degrees from the previous photo, you will see Old Faithful, the most popular geyser.

Old Faithful erupts every 90 minutes, plus or minus 10 minutes.

   
   
Here is a time-lapsed photo of an eruption of Old Faithful.

 

 

 

   

   

 

 

As you can see, Old Faithful still has a lot of steam left even after all these years.

The next day, I went back and got a closer look at Old Faithful erupting.

Another shot of the morning eruption.

As I drove south, I stopped by the Midway Geyser Basin.

This was an interesting stop.  You could watch the boiling hot water from the geysers spill into the freezing cold Firehole River.

   
   
Another picture where the hot water mixes with the cold.

   
   
... and again.

   
   
The colors of the park are pretty vivid.  The different colors appear due to the minerals that are brought up from underground.  Also, certain bacteria and algae live off of these mineral deposits.  You can see a pond in the background.

   
   
Here is a closer picture of the pond.

   
   
In the middle of this basin is a large lake.  On this day, it was difficult to see across the lake due to the high concentration of steam.  At the center of this picture is an underwater geyser bubbling to the surface.  Near the edges of the lake the water seems to boil.

   
   
Here is a picture of a nearby pool.  The blue color is so pretty.

   
   
Near Midway Geyser Basin, you come across the beautiful winding Nez Perce Creek and green pastures.

   
   
I really liked this view of the winding creek.  In the middle right of picture center, you can make out a fly fisherman.

   
   
Here is a picture of some falls as you are nearly out of Yellowstone.

   
   
Here is a view of Lewis Lake through the trees as you drive towards the southern entrance of Yellowstone National Park.

     

This page was last enhanced on Saturday, January 03, 2004