24 January 2008

Snowmobiling Yellowstone

The weather in St. Louis can currently be described as freezing!

I don’t mind braving cold weather as long as I’m going to be rewarded for it. Sometimes that reward is in the form of beer, other times it’s snowmobiling Yellowstone National Park.

Over his shoulder

Two years ago James and I took our first vacation together, an impromptu flight to Jackson, WY (yeah – last minute travel deals!). For the first two days it snowed like cats and dogs, giving us close to three feet of fresh powder – great for snowboarding, snowshoeing and snowmobiling.

While Jackson Hole is fantastic, snowmobiling Yellowstone was the highlight of our adventure.

And before you ask, we skipped Old Faithful and opted to visit the Grand Canyon instead. Even though the park is practically deserted during the winter, we imagined that we’d run into more people by going to Old Faithful - after all, it’s the main attraction. We made a wise choice and only encountered two other snowmobiling groups – in passing.

Total number of humans encountered: less than 25.

Bison: kind of like cows

Our day began sometime before sunrise, when we were picked up by a van and taken to a discreet location where we were outfitted with our insulated gear.

Eventually, we loaded into a van for a 90 minute ride to Flagg Ranch. It was at this location where I met a Park Ranger who advised me to “Bundle up! It’s 5!” …as in five degrees.
Our first stop, Lewis Falls, was along the road about halfway between the Southern park entrance and Grant Village. Shortly after this picture was taken, I lost feeling in my hands, feet and face, so temperature became a non-issue.

Lewis Falls

Though we passed through several herd of Bison and saw a variety of other animals from afar, most of our day was spent riding in solitude, gazing off into the snowy distance.

Isolation

Eventually we arrived at our destination: the Grand Canyon of Yellowstone. Through the blanket of snow, I could still make out the vibrant colors of the canyon walls.

Grand Canyon of Yellowstone

The Grand Canyon was carved by the Lower Falls, seen in the distance.

Lower Yellowstone Falls

As impressive as the Canyon was, walking a catwalk toward boiling mud was even more spectacular. Sadly, what I could not get a picture of was me busting my ass just after I snapped this photo.

The path

And check out the amazing view on our journey out of the park!

Towering trees

I can't wait to go back. I'd love to experience Yellowstone during the summer, when it's a totally different place!

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Listening to: White Rabbits – I used to complain now I don’t
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6 comments:

  1. hey, those pics are *too* good - they made me feel cold just looking at 'em! ;-)

    ReplyDelete
  2. ...and that is why we love to snowmobile!!

    Thanks for taking us along on your Yellowstone adventure!

    ReplyDelete
  3. I'm gonna blogroll you girl - these pics are too good to keep to yourself!

    ReplyDelete

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