Yellowstone Trip: Day 6: Northern Yellowstone

Day 6 sends us back into Yellowstone National Park for the day. To keep from driving back and forth aimlessly in this enormous National Park, Jared and I tackled the northern and eastern regions of Yellowstone as a group today.
Steaming Morning StreamsIn Fact, The Whole Mountain Steams Like Crazy...The Corps of Engineers had their work cut out for them in this park

We started out by driving up to the Mammoth Hot Springs region, passing a ton of springs and pools steaming in the cooler morning air. The hot springs themselves were, indeed, mammoth- over hundreds of years they built up like coral reefs into terraces and various patterns, consuming even the trees around them.
Mammoth Hot Springs looks like dinosaurs should be walking it, not humansBizarre Landsacpe: white terraces, gray bubbles, and orange rivers all in one placeThese Trees Were Buried Alive By GeysersThe Angel Terrace came right up to the parking lot

Also at the north end of the park we found the Old Fort Yellowstone, where the army was originally stationed to manage the park and prevent the then-rampant vandalism from destroying it. To be honest, the fort was not much to see, as all the buildings have been repurposed for various government offices that are not open to the public. Many of them are even private residences with satellite dishes on the back…
The Old Fort at Yellowstone- Now private residencesThe old fort now sports dual Dish Network hookups...

We headed out the North Entrance to Gardiner, MT, for lunch, which was quite the interesting town… Jared and I don’t think there were more than 5 buildings in business there that were not hotels, restaurants, or tourist services of some kind. Much of it was closed or for sale, as well, including the place we had lunch at. Coming back in, we passed through the Roosevelt Arch, which was quite impressive, but clearly designed in a time before buses and RVs. We also passed a gas station with machines so old they could literally not cope with > $4 / gallon prices…
The Roosevelt Bridge at the North Entrance is NOT wide enough for a car and a bus.$2.33 Gas Looked Really Good At First... Psyche!

In the afternoon we saw a fair bit of wildlife, including a pronghorn and black bear. For good measure, we also include the robin, spruce moths, and tent worms we saw along the way 🙂
Pronghorn!Bear!Ordinary Robin!Just a few of the millions of spruce moths that hatched this weekTent Worms- NastyJared by the world-famous Petrified Tree

We saw the famous petrified tree, and a bunch of other interesting geysers, springs, pools, waterfalls, etc., with only one disappointment: we walked down one path which had been posted as “No access to base of falls” hoping to at least see the falls from below… no luck whatsoever. It was a completely fruitless walk for a rather obscured view of the river that did not include any falls. Jared was pretty upset, heheh.
Tower Falls are pretty from the top.We Should Have ListenedNice Reflection in the SpringBubbling Mud PotA Hidden GeyserA New Color: GreenLeHardy Fire Still Burning

Our last stop of the day was to follow a gravel road up to the trailhead leading to Mt. Washburn. There is apparently a cool overlook up there, but it turns out to be a 4-5 hour hike rising some 1400 feet from the trailhead, which we were not at all keen to take at 4:30pm…
Mt. Washburn... 4 hours and 1400 vertical feet away.  We vote no.

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