Yellowstone or Bust!?!
Maiden Voyage 2018
“For The Benefit And Enjoyment Of The People”
Our original plan was to get Jeanah’s little sister safely married off the middle of August
hitting the road after the dust had cleared. First Stop. Glacier National Park. Unfortunately, the wedding dust was replaced by thick clouds of smoke from numerous area Wild Fires, one of which was our first destination. Okeedokee. Yellowstone it is.
On the way to “The World’s first National Park” we wanted to visit friends near Sun Valley, Idaho. We saw an interesting rock formation on the way that let us know this would be an exciting trip.
Our late arrival had us “dark parking” in the Sawtooth National Recreation Area (SNRA) and we didn’t realize till morning what a lovely place we were in.
We enjoyed a meal and a free Symphony performance under the stars in Sun Valley, ID…
— Thank you Sandoz family for your warm hospitality…we will be back!
Another night in the lovely SNRA and we were back on the road.
We made a stop at Craters of the Moon National Monument where we purchased an annual National Park Pass. The America the Beautiful Pass is $80.00 and gains admittance to over 2,000 federal recreation sites for a full year. If visiting 2 or more National sites (like Yellowstone and Grand Teton – entrance fees $35.00 each) it is well worth it to purchase the annual pass.
…zoom in to see Victor’s hat, arm, and part of his head where the lightning bolts are…
…and his shot of Mo from the other direction with Jeanah sitting in the passenger seat…
Craters of the Moon is exactly as it sounds, a seemingly inhospitable and alien landscape where you expect to see people in space suits bouncing over the rocky crags.
Reading about this as an alternate route for people on the Oregon Trail I can’t help but imagine those brave souls. Oregon Pioneer and Author Overton Johnson summed it up when he said:
“This is, perhaps the most rugged desert and dreary country between the borders of the United States and the shores of the Pacific. It is nothing less than a wild rocky barren wilderness, or wrecked and ruined nature, a vast field of volcanic desolation.”
Then again, it’s better than the alternative.
Victor: “Want to climb to the top of that cinder cone?”
Jeanah: VERY Unladylike Snort
Victor: “We’ll just take a picture of that guy doing it.”
On the way to Yellowstone we drove through Arco, ID Population 995.
I believe that number never increases because the crazy senior class does this each year.
We parked a few miles outside the West Yellowstone entrance at Bill Frome County Park on Henry’s Lake in Island Park, ID. Just wanted to kick back and wait till Monday in hopes the crowds at Yellowstone would die down. Plus, it was pretty…and free.
After leaving our campsite, we explored the lake surround taking Mo on a shameless excuse for a road. We do not have 4 wheel drive so when the road got steep and dreadful and poor Mo no go no mo – we turned back. Mo and Victor did a phenomenal job but I may have left finger gouges on my armrest. On the upside, I took this photo of Henry’s Lake after we turned around. There’s a wee storm a brewin’.
Our last night before actually entering Yellowstone, we shifted north to Hebgen Lake in Montana. In this section of the country you are within spitting distance of both Idaho and Wyoming and for some ridiculous reason this pleases me immensely. What did not please me immensely was this sign, the first of it’s kind I have ever seen.
Hmmmmm. This is a very short distance from our campsite in Idaho. There were no bear signs there. Do bears not cross state lines with impunity? Does Idaho not care about our wellfare? Do bears know what a tasty tasty treat I am? Victor rolls his eyes when I pepper him with these questions. Hey now – I’m the one mosquitos swarm on after they swoop around him with a head nod and a “What up?” All things to ponder as we enjoy the view from this night’s campsite.