For the faithfuls and the first-timers, Yellowstone National Park holds superb treasures. It is vast, varied and vaunted. Whether you want to indulge in a leisurely walk or quietly watch the sunset, you will find all sorts of activities at Yellowstone. There are very few things you ought not to miss before you pass on to the ‘better place’. Why not make this life, its here and now the best place to be?
What’s the Big Deal About Yellowstone?
Located in Wyoming, but extending to Montana and Idaho, Yellowstone National Park is ideally located to cater to visitors from all three and their nearby states. It has several types of ecosystems and is the centerpiece of the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem, the largest remaining nearly-intact ecosystem in the norther temperate zone of the earth. It spans an area of around 3,500 square miles which consists of lakes, canyons, rivers and mountain ranges. Yellowstone Lake is one of the largest high-altitude lakes in North America and is the largest supervolcano in the continent. All that said, it is not just a site to be revered from a distance, but an accomplishment that should be the feather in all our hats.
Here are the Five Things You Must See in Yellowstone, Before You Die:
1. O Come All Ye Faithful
The Old Faithful or Upper Geyser Basin is the most popular attraction in Yellowstone. This a landmark of erupting geysers. It might not be the tallest geyser, but it does ensure maximum value for time and money as it is the one that erupts most frequently. It can be seen from up close and from down far. It erupts every 90 minutes and when it does, it is a sight worth witnessing and it erupts up to 5 minutes, the most duration a geyser eruption has been known to last. It reaches heights of 106 – 184 feet.
While there, it is mandatory to make a pit-stop at the Old Faithful Inn which is the most popular and visited hotel at the park. It reflects the true and modern chaos of nature, although it was build in 1904.
2. The Grand Canyon
No, we are not in Arizona, but we are at the best canyons after them. At 308 feet, the Grand Canyon and the Lower Falls of the Grand Canyon are the most photographed features at Yellowstone. This canyon is fairly new, at 14,000 years old. How the canyon was formed is still a mystery and cannot be fully decoded. It is one of the park’s blockbuster attractions and is 24-mile-long, carved in the Yellowstone river. The ooh-factor is plenty at the Grand Canyon of Yellowstone. The canyon is believed to have been formed as a result of erosion rather than glaciation.
3. Through the Prism
The Grand Prismatic Spring is the largest spring in the US and the third largest in the world. It is also said to be the most surreal sight in Yellowstone. It is surrounded by deepblue waters and rainbow-colored rings of algae. The burst of colors at the spring changes with each season. In summer the mats will be more orange than red, while in winter they are often dark green. Each year the spring discharges about 560 gallons per minute at 160 F. The temperature may vary but stays on the hotter side.
4. Row the Boat
Pick your jaw up from the ground and grab the oar. Yellowstone Lake is the largest high-altitude lake in the lower 48 states and is a breathtaking vision. With snow-capped mountains rising across the lake and the ocean-like waves hitting the shore, the lake is grander than any larger-than-life water body. It hosts a cross-country skiing contest during winter. Fishing, kayaking, rowing, boating, swimming and bluff-top campsites are just some of the activities to be engaged in at the lake.
5. Lamar Valley
To witness one of the few places in the US where wildlife roams around freely, you must visit Lamar Valley. Large herds of bison, elk, coyotes, pronghorns and wolves roam the vast valley. It is perhaps the best destination in the world to watch wolves. Get your binoculars ready for sighting some of the most beloved wildlife creatures. It is one of the least traveled roads in the Yellowstone Park. The best opportunities for seeing a wolf or a bear are either dawn or dusk as the animals are more active on those times. It is the best opportunity for a North American safari, especially during the favorable summer months.
Yellowstone caters to all tastes and preferences, be it quiet reflection or active adventure. It caters to the taste of the tourist, the traveler and the explorer. There is plenty to be discovered at the park and the tourists have an equal opportunity of stumbling upon a facet of nature that has yet not been explored fully. It is also charming to understand the long history that goes behind the development and upkeep of the park.
Mark the Yellowstone National Park as a must-visit in your scrapbooks and make bookings for the earliest summer you can find.