Thursday, July 17, 2008

Island Park, Idaho

We left our cute little campground on Tuesday morning. We didn't get an early start leaving at about 10:00 but we only had about 90 miles to drive. When we stopped at the Visitor Center when we entered Idaho the lady there told us about a scenic drive that was on our way so that was the plan. The road came off Highway 20 in Ashton (pretty cool name, huh)? Had to get a picture of that. There were a couple of places to pull off and we pulled off A LOT to admire the scenery. We were pulling the rig so we had to have really big pull offs and there were plenty of those. The highlight of the drive was Mesa Falls (upper and lower) but there was plenty to see along the way. It took us 4 hours to drive the 90 miles to Island Park but that's okay. We had reservations so there was no hurry to get there. We are right across the road from Henry's Lake State Park and about 15 miles from West Yellowstone, Montana which is just down the road from the west entrance to Yellowstone Park.

We took a right......

We could see the Tetons from the road.

Lower Mesa Falls

Upper Mesa Falls

We decided when we got here that every Wednesday would be "Yellowstone Day". There is no way that you can see the whole park in one day and we do have a whole month here SOOOOOOO Wednesday we went to Yellowstone. Rod has one of those "old people" cards so we get in free to every National Park in the US. Pretty cool, I think. We took the south loop through the park because it goes to Old Faithful. There are so many places to stop along the way so it actually took us the entire day to do that loop. There are TONS of geysers and pools to stop at along the way and the views, well, what can I say? Absolutely unbelievable. I don't know where all the wildlife was but we didn't see that much. Lots of bison, a few elk and a couple of bald eagles, but that's about it. We did find some kids who were feeding bugs to the trout in the river. They would throw the bug into the river and the trout would actually raise their heads out of the water to eat the bug. There were also a lot of people fishing in the rivers there.

These pools are called Paint Pots

Can you believe the color? Looks like the water in the Caribbean but this water is about 160 degrees.

Just one of the MANY geysers along the south loop

We did finally make it to Old Faithful about 45 minutes before it went off. We got a good seat, a bottle of water and just waited for it to "blow". It was pretty awesome but we had seen so many other geysers along the way that the hype just didn't do it justice. If we had come in the south entrance that would have been the first stop but since we came in the west entrance we had to go through Geyser Basin and it's just really incredible all the geysers that are there along the way.

Old Faithful

Bison doing what they seem to always be doing, eating

Just meandering down the highway

Right on the side of the road

After Old Faithful we went to the Grand Canyon of Yellowstone and Yellowstone Lake before heading for the exit. I have so many great pictures that I think I'll wait and post again tomorrow so you can see some more of the really fantastic scenery. We'll be doing the north loop next Wednesday so be prepared for more pictures then too.

Today we need to get laundry done and tomorrow we're going to take a long drive down to Idaho Falls which is about 100 miles from here. There's nothing here but small grocery stores so we need a "big" city to stock up on food and Rod needs wood to make something for the boat motor to sit in. We're also going to take a trip to Rexburg where there is this bear and wolf place that you can drive through. It's called Yellowstone Bear World but it's not in the park at all. It should be another busy day.

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