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.
After 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.
I 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!
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.”
He fixed my roof!