Sunday, November 28, 2010

nom.nom.nom. Elk & calf early evening Yellowstone

The light was poor but this was such a lovely sight. The young elk rose from a nap and bounded over to his standing his mother. And there in the lovely grassland along the Madison Valley in western Yellowstone....he had his snack.

Clepsydra Geyser, Lower Geyser Basin, Yellowstone

Clepsydra Geyser is one of the most regularly "performing" geyser in all of Yellowstone. It erupts almost continuosly up to heights of 45 feet. It is located in the Lower Geyser Basin off the road between Old Faithful Lodge and Madison Junction. The Lower Geyser Basin has a number of beautiful hot springs, mud pots, and other geysers, easily accesbile by a series of boardwalks and paths.

That is clear, clear water of a blue & gold hot spring: West Thumb, Yellowstone

Our first day in Yellowstone NP we drove north from Grand Tetons and stopped for a walk around the West Thumb Geyser Basin that is located along the shorline of Lake Yellowstone. A series of boardwalks and paths wind through geysers, hot springs, fumaroles, and geysers at and in the lake's edge. It was a magical introduction to the geysers of Yellowstone. This one here was steaming but the water was crystal clear magnifying the colors of the beautiful spring.

Smokey Sunset: Grand Teton National Park

Bull Elk and part of his harem: Grand Tetons near Lake Jackson (at dusk)

This Bull Elk and his harem came out in the early dusk to graze in grassland along the Grand Teton park road near Lake Jackson. It was the first time we heard the enchantingly eerie "bugling" of the male elk. A truly memorable sound.

Autumn Splendour in Grand Teton NP

We spent four days in the Grand Teton NP in late September of 2010. One afternoon we drove along the East Side of the Valley (along the Moose Wilson Rd & Teton Park Rd). We stopped for a short hike into the autumn colors and snapped this lovely picture

Oregon Trail Register Rock, Guernsey, WY

Register Rock is a 100 foot sandstone cliff that sits back from the Platte River. Thousands of emigrants traveling the Oregon, California & Mormon Trails would camp at the foot of the cliffs. And many of them inscribed their names, place of origin (or where they were headed and dates on the rock. It was like a great big hotel registry for the campsite. A trail follows along the base of the cliff allowing a visitor to view the inscriptions. The day we were there, I was accompanied by a resident Corgy (probably from the local ranchhouse) who led me down the path and back to the parking lot.

Angry Skies over Fort Laramie, WY

We visited Historic Fort Laramie on the Platte River on a day that started sunny and soon became gray and threatening. Fortunately this sky skirted north of where we were and just put on a great show for us. The Fort complex sits on the banks of the Platte River. It was originally built to serve the fur trade & fur traders. Once the western emigration began in earnest the US Army took over the Fort to serve the wagon trains on the Oregon and Mormon Trails. Its a lovely expansive spot with considerable amount of the buildings reconstructed. There is an informative film showing every 15 minutes or so in the visitor center. Well worth the drive to see.

Big Skies over Colorado's Pawnee National Grasslands

First day of trip. We drove from Denver Intl Airport to Cheyenne via a sidetrip through Pawnee National Grasslands. The Grasslands are on the western edge of the Great Plains but saw limited agricultural use. They were withdrawn from cultivation after the Dust Bowl. The grasslands are filled with birds and known for its raptors which we saw soaring in these BIG skies. We also saw several herds of deer, old windmills, and very few cars or people. A lovely welcome to Big Sky country.

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Sunrise over Coffee Pot Bayou, St Pete, Florida

This was the morning of Yarik's 1st day of work at Beall's. I was driving to pick him up and stopped to catch the sunrise over Coffee Pot Bayou. A wonderful way to start the day.