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July 8 &9, 2011

Yellowstone! Today we left Bozeman and headed to Yellowstone National Park. I didn’t think there could be more OH MY GOSH DAY’s but OH MY GOSH! Daily I am amazed at the splendor and beauty of the world that God has given us to enjoy. Today the “oh my goshes” were in relation to the beauty of the view and not the scariness of the roads! (refer to the 7/07/11 post)

One of my favorite things about Yellowstone was the random animal sightings. When we first entered the stone gates and drove to the lodge there were elk everywhere, in the parking lots, on the roads, lying on the grass, everywhere! They were so cocky! As we drove along through the parking lot they would stare at us and then walk right in front of the car looking as if they were saying “ha! Can’t touch me!”   

They are interesting looking creatures.  

The other animal which totally amazed me were the bison. Being from Oklahoma, I have seen many of these creatures in my life time. I have never been close enough to one that I could reach out and touch it if I so desired. (Well, once . . . when my sister was in college. The school mascot was a bison and on the campus there was a bison in a cage. I was young, in first grade, and since it was behind a fence, decided I could pet it. I did. It just stood there. I do not recommend doing this to a bison in the wild that is not caged!) We pulled up to a four way stop and I did a double take. What I thought was a big rock was a bison chillin’ by the stop sign watching the cars go by. Bison are incredible animals. They are huge and in some ways rather ugly, but, they have such kind faces and eyes. Although they look fairly gentle, they are wild animals therefore it is important to keep your distance.

Of course there were the cute little critters – chipmunks, squirrels and such.











Then there was the crow, the sole, lonely crow. Of course, we decided it was Carol who had finally caught up with us. (see 6/2?/11 post for an explanation of the crow)               




She followed us all over the park. As strange as it may seem the crow has become my symbol of peace.

Another favorite about Yellowstone is the diversity of the countryside. The landscape changes around every corner.



There are the beautiful snowcapped mountains,




the lakes,




the roaring rivers, 






the hot springs and of course, 


Old Faithful. We sat on the boardwalk for at least thirty minutes before Old Faithful blew making snide comments about how the wait better be worth it. IT WAS! What an amazing sight! Who would have thought watching steaming hot water blow up into the air would be so breathtakingly beautiful? More than anything, knowing how consistently it blows is amazing. Nature is so incredible!                                                                                                                                                                             

A few years ago there was a wildfire that burned a significant portion of the park. Today, in many of these areas, there are now signs of new life springing forth.

The last day as we were driving out of the park, we enjoyed the beauty of a huge lake with mountains in the distance. The wind was so strong it made very large waves which blew over the roadway. The two days spent at Yellowstone were such wonderful “OH MY GOSH!” days. This was our first visit to Yellowstone but hopefully it will not be our last. On another note, if you are ever in the area I highly recommend checking out Big Sky Lodge. It is about an hour away from the park and is a very nice, reasonably priced place to stay. We saw this moose as we were driving to the Big Sky Lodge.