Yellowstone National Park
February 2002

Rich, Alan, Jan, and I spent a week in Wyoming during February.

We arrived in Jackson Hole on Saturday, February 9. President Bush flew in the same day, so we got to see Air Force One as we were landing. After a quick nostalgic stop at Dornan's (where Mary enjoyed so many meals this past summer), we headed for the National Elk Refuge and took a horse-drawn sleigh ride to see not only the elk but also two bald eagles. One of the women on the sleigh with us was a journalist who had flown in on Air Force One with the President, so it was interesting to hear some of her stories about her job tracking the president. That evening we had dinner with Adam and enjoyed talking to him a great deal.

Sunday we drove through beautiful Grand Teton National Park on our way to Flagg Ranch. There we boarded a snow coach (a small bus with ski tips in place of the front wheels and tank treads in place of the back wheels). On the way to Old Faithful, we stopped at a number of lovely places, including the West Thumb geyser area on Yellowstone Lake. Our snow coach driver was wearing an Olympic torch volunteer pin - he was the one who drove the Olympic torch in to Old Faithful just before the Olympics.

We spent five full days in Yellowstone National Park, staying at the Old Faithful Snow Lodge. We skiied and/or hiked four of those days and spent one day on a snow coach tour of other parts of the park. We had fabulous weather - clear blue skies every day except the day of our snow coach tour. We saw lots of wildlife: bison, elk, coyotes, fox, bald eagles, a golden eagle, goldeneye ducks, ravens, trumpeter swans, and otter. We also saw many geysers erupting, which is fun because most are fairly unpredictable. We saw these geysers erupting: Old Faithful, Castle, Anemone, Plume, Grotto, Big Lion, and Lonestar. On our snow coach tour we also stopped at Fountain Paint Pots (bubbling colorful mud pots) and Dragon's Mouth Spring (a large cave emitting horrible sulfurous odors and strange gurgling sounds).

On Saturday we took the snow coach back out of the park. When we got to the motel, we spent several hours getting caught up on the Olympic news. It was fun watching the Nordic ski events that day, since we had just been skiing all week ourselves. As a bonus, we got to see Adam again for dinner that evening. Then on Sunday we flew home.

Click on each photo below to see an enlarged version.

View from the plane

View from Dornan's


National Elk Refuge

Bald eagle

Wildlife Museum

Elk antler arch at the
Town Square in Jackson

Our snowcoach

Lewis River canyon

Lewis Falls

Jumping from the bridge!

Deep snow!

West Thumb Geyser Area
(on Yellowstone Lake)

Otter on the ice at West Thumb

With our snow coach driver

Grotto Geyser

Grotto Ceyser

Morning Glory Pool

Bison near Old Faithful

Big Lion Geyser

Back from a long ski
to Fern Cascades

Castle Geyser

Castle Geyser
(note the rainbow - we actually
saw a double rainbow in the mist)

Lower Falls of the
Yellowstone River

Gibbons Falls

Grand Canyon of the
Yellowstone River

Lone Star Geyser

Kepler Cascade

Old Faithful

Rich, Alan, Mary, Adam, Jan