Yellowstone and Freezing Rain

Maybe it was the freezing rain. Or the acres of burned forests on my drive in. Or the piles of greasy black gravel mixed in with dirty snow. Maybe I came too early in the season.

I didn’t enjoy Yellowstone.

bleakAfter an unexpectedly spectacular drive up from Casper, Wyoming to the East Entrance, the sky turned a flat, cold grey and freezing rain made for a blurry view of wet and burned trees. (More than a third of the park has been consumed by forest fires.)

Hardly another car in sight, I passed abandoned road construction, empty tractors, and piles of snowy, greasy gravel.

My panoramic vistas shortened to quick turns, so I made a very slow trek (28 miles) to my RV park.

I like to reserve a site in the park because I love to have a beautiful campsite. But Fishing Bridge is not beautiful- it is really just a crowded parking lot. My perpetual view was of a neighbor repeatedly braving the freezing rain to smoke.

Determined not let the weather get me down, the next morning I put on my parka and made the one hour drive to destination uno, Old Faithful.

death in ynp2I meandered among the boiling, sulfurous geysers, observed the creeping desolation caused by the silica rich minerals, and then ran for cover when it started to hail.

Realizing that I am missing some fundamental point, I consult my park map to see what else is here. More geysers, more hot springs. Boiling mud pots.

Ah, look! A canyon! Waterfalls! That’s my thing!

Next day’s hike, Canyon Falls.

The falls were beautiful. And the Grand Canyon of Yellowstone is breathtaking.

But I think I just don’t do well when I have to share my nature scenes with crowds of strangers.

With more thunderstorms in the forecast, I decide to use my reservation at Glacier National Park.

It was the right decision! Check out this campsite!

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And you are never going to believe this, but while stopped at a gas station about eight miles outside of the park, I am surprised by a knock on my door.

“When I saw that Mini with Texas plates, I knew it was you.”

A fellow nomad!

He fixed my roof!

Roof Repair

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