Sunday, August 28, 2011

Yellowstone 2011

A few weeks ago Marc and I were able to take time off work and meet my family in Yellowstone National Park for a week. We had tons of fun and I took literally over a thousand pictures so if your up for look at a lot of pictures read on.... (I'm not computer savvy enough put the pictures into a collage so I had to upload each one individually-took a lot of patience and time) So here goes. Kuddos to Seth for taking the first picture :D

The vacation started for Marc and I on Thursday night. We hit the road as soon as we could get off work and about an hour into the drive this is what we found...

We actually saw a sign that said "Blasting Zone Ahead" (any Brian Reagan fans??) So we sat for a half hour parked on the freeway. Could have been worse.

At one of the rest stops while I was on a potty break (and lets face it there were A LOT of those) Marc snapped this picture...

After 2 days of being on the road we were pretty excited to see this gate welcoming us to the park.

Literally as soon as we drove in the park we were seeing wildlife everywhere. Started off with hundreds of elk causing some traffic jams cuz everyone was taking pictures.

Since we still had a few hours to kill until my family would get there Marc and I decided to take our time getting to the campsite and enjoy all the views.

All of a sudden we were stuck in a traffic jam and looked out to our left and just off the road there was a baby bear, super cute! This is the best picture I could get cuz there was a ranger standing there telling people to keep moving.

Farther down the road there was another group of people all pulled over to the side of the road looking thru binoculars and taking pictures of another bear way off in the distance. Even with the zoom this is the best I could get with my camera.

This was a little picnic area we stopped at to eat some dinner, very pretty.

This one is hard to see, but the little dots up in the left corner are some elk, and then in front of the hill there is one dot with two more off to the right, those three are more bears. We were pretty excited by this point, we'd only been in the park for a few hours and already seen five bears and some elk.

Just a little farther down the road from the bears was ANOTHER traffic jam. This time due to buffalo..

We eventually made it to the campsite and then the rest of the family showed up. Everyone was able to make it for at least a few days. The next morning we headed off to see Old Faithful, we got there shortly before the geyser was expected to go off so we wandered around the gift shops until show time. It was really neat watching it shoot up in the air.

After Old Faithful we wandered around the rest of the geysers and pools. I should have taken pictures of the names of each one, but I didn't so just enjoy the no name pools...

As we were wandering around a Ranger started gathering everybody over to the beehive geyser which was estimated to go off in about 20 mins. The Beehive actually shoots up higher in the air and shoots longer than Old Faithful, and it doesn't go off as regularly. We had pretty good timing this whole trip. This next picture is of one that went off behind us as we were waiting for the Beehive..

This is the Beehive. The little one on the left is what they call the indicator, showing that the Beehive is about to blow.

Just after the Beehive started Old Faithful shot off again in the back ground, made for some really neat pictures.

All the people standing in the "splash zone". I stayed back so I could get the whole thing with the camera

This is my favorite picture of Sky from the whole trip. Closest thing Marc and I will ever have to a puppy.

They seem to think they own the road...

I almost missed this view point on the hike, Marc ran to get me so I could turn around. I'm glad he did, I would have been really disappointed if I had missed it.

A nice couple volunteered to take this next picture. Note to self in the future when someone else is taking a photo make sure and specify what you want in the picture. We ended up with a picture of us in front of the waterfall, but no waterfall....oh well. Good thing we had the tripod (my sweet husband lugged it around everywhere for me) After the couple left we went and set it up so we could get the waterfall.

Standing at the top of the waterfall looking down, kinda cool.

Pretty rainbow

Could not figure out what this creature was across the way, I think we finally decided it was a badger.

By this point I was pooped. Being pregnant and hiking 5-6 miles is rough, but we were in bear country and I refused to sit and rest.

We went for a bike ride and passed this pretty meadow.

I managed to take this photo while I was riding my bike and not crash...wish I could say the same when I was riding my mom's bike a couple days later...

Again we timed this one just right. Bet not many people see this one since it's at the end of the bike trail.

Our attempt at a quick family photo...

These next photos are from the 6 mile hike we did to where the Hell-roaring river meet ups with the Yellowstone river. Again, 6 miles pregnant is no good, especially when you end on uphill switchbacks for the last 1/2 mile. But it was fun, even if there were tons of rattle snakes along the trail. Mom insisted on family photos since we were all together and Sky was leaving the next day. I think they turned out pretty good, even if the sun was un-cooperative.

Tay "loved" being on this bridge so much we had to have a picture there. We shoulda all jumped just for her...

It was mom and dad's 26th wedding anniversary this week so of course we had to get a shot of the two of them. Happy anniversary!

Can't you just feel the love :)

I saw this view A LOT everywhere we went, I got really good at bringing up the rear. Only Marc was patient enough to hike slow with the prego lady.

Not very comforting when just off the trail you see this...

And then just a bit farther down....

At one point this little birdie was our fearless leader down the trail. We later learned at one of the visitor center's that we should not have been so close to him. I forget what he's called but apparently they are known for attacking...

Water felt good after hiking in the sun.

Of course Marc had to do some fishing.

Sky skipped some rocks.

Just across the river we found the remains of what looked like an elk.

I look beat in this next one, but hey I survived the hike.

Buffalo we saw crossing the water.

Duckies! I figured I had to document all the wildlife we saw in Yellowstone :)

These next ones are the mud geysers. Yes I actually took pictures of mud...

This one was called "Dragon's Cave" (or Dragon's something??)

Marc insisted on proof that I was actually on this vacation, baby too..

Some more pools that we went to.

Lilly pad pond! I don't think I had ever seen a lilly pad before...

Midway Basin Geysers

Grand Prismatic (I think). Would have been really cool to see it from above cuz it was so big.

I shoulda been a hairstylist. (Marc says it's a good thing we're having a boy!)

Wish I coulda got both Tay's reaction AND mom as she ran and jumped on the bridge just for Tay.

Our last day of vacation we went into the Grand Teton National Park. Definitely gonna have to go back and spend some more time there.

Jenny Lake, very pretty.