14 December 2014

Day 14 - Oregon and Yellowstone

Wake up early to begin our clock reset before arriving home.

Plan for the day, visit these areas:
Old Faithful
Mud Volcano Area
Grand Prismatic Spring in Midway Geyser Basin
Sapphire Pool in Biscuit Basin
Fountain Paint Pot

Go dump trash out of bag in dumpster a couple blocks away as indicated in our very old directions in the rental ... it has not been updated in a while.  Keep bag.

Pass a massive herd of buffalo on our way to Old Faithful!  A bunch of calves with their mothers.  So incredibly cool.  And it was great to see traffic slowing waaaaay down for them.

And the rangers really seem to keep a close eye on their charges, protecting them from thoughtless humans.  Great job ladies and gents!

We arrive at Old Faithful some 30 minutes after the last eruption.  It is cold (in the 30s) and windy.  We seek shelter to await the next eruption.  Himself is so sweet to play windbreak for me.  I'm hopping around in an attempt to keep warm, but this was probably the chilliest experience on vacation.  It was the wind.

A website shows 10:53 and 12:33 estimated eruptions for Old Faithful.  I think it is pretty interesting that they have created a calculation that uses the time and duration of Old Faithful's eruptions to guesstimate the next two (as far out as their calculation carries them).

We were present for the 10:53 eruption, and it was neat to watch Old Faithful erupt with a couple hundred other visitors.  What was sad is how many turned away to look at pictures they had taken even before the geyser finished!  :(

We did not take any photos of Old Faithful, we simply experienced the show.

We wander through the visitor's center, grab a snack at the car (a local raven kept us thoroughly entertained!), and then return for OF's 12:33-ish eruption.  This one had a lot more teasers before it finally erupted, and we viewed the spectacle from a different direction.

I grab another quick snack and we head to several other geyser basins within driving distance.  

Somewhere between 3 and 4 miles walked today, and a bunch of Popsicle mimicry.  Ei yay yay.  I need warmer clothing for standing around in 30 degree weather.  Something with greater bum coverage preferable.  

We saw a coyote on one of our walks, both as we were coming and returning along a bike path.  He/She was so fun to watch.  On our return walk, we saw hunting behavior.  Fox-like jumping and pouncing occurred way off in the distance.  I could have watched all day.

Some people do not understand the concept "pull off the road to look at wildlife."  A couple in-duh-viduals will stop dead in the middle of the road.  Even a bus!

On the return drive we observe a raven grasping a mushroom in its beak.  Too early for nesting material, maybe food?  Himself mentions a shamanic ritual, so further discussion devolves into anthropomorphic hilarity.

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