Bears! Bears! Bears!
22 APR 2019 - 28 APR 2019
The first national park
Yellowstone was a must do on our list and we were suuuuuper excited to be finally arriving here. First, a quick stop at the visitor center. When coming out 30 minutes later we were completely blocked in by bison everywhere! Jeeeej! The perfect beginning of the perfect first day here.
Day 1: Wildlife spotting
For wildlife spotting head to the Grand loop road (Tower - Mammoth) and the Northeast Entrance road. The flat and open ranges make it easier to spot everything and definitely stop at every telescope to ask what they are looking at. By 7 pm we had seen 1 black bear next to the road (the very first!!!), 1000 Bison, 1 Mountain goat, 4 sandhill cranes, some Pronghorn, a dozen of raptors, 1 dot that presented a grey wolf, 3 dots that moved like grizzlies, lots of deer and smaller mammals . Ecstatic would be an understatement to our feelings at that time!
Day 2-4: Tourist time
This park is so diverse we couldn't get enough of it. We spend 4 whole days inside which were all chuck full of marvelous sights. Needles to say our cameras worked overtime here. Check the gallery for a very small selection 😄. Surrounded by colored pools, bubbling sounds and steaming geyser we checked off as much of the major sites as possible. ✔ Mammoth Hot springs ✔ Norris geyser basin ✔ Grand canyon of Yellowstone ✔ Upper geyser basin ✔ Lower geyser basin ✔ Grand prismatic spring ✔ Black sand basin ✔ Biscuit basin ✔ Fountain Paint pots In the end we had seen more geysers erupting than we could count and keep in mind that a part of Yellowstone park was still closed at this point.
Day 3-4: Backcountry time
One of the biggest recommendations we can make is to explore the Backcountry of
Yellowstone by staying overnight in a tent. In summer stays are only $3 and during winter they are free! We decided to hike the Lone Star Geyser trail as far as possible. We did take out the skis this time ( We didn't want another Big bend experience 😅). Due to heavy rainfalls and dry terrain we didn't get as far as we wanted, but that didn't matter. The campsite was surrounded by hot pools and smoking rivers and we were all alone there to enjoy it. The next day we walked back passed the Lone Star Geyser in the hope to see an eruption. While we got closer to the geyser we heard a loud rumbling noise and realized we would have to run for it. Skis thrown aside, we sprinted to the geyser and still got to witness the eruption. The best part was that nobody was around for this one. We settled down and looked at it for an hour before heading back. If you are ever in Yellowstone and want to witness a unique eruption this is the one for sure!
Grand Teton National park
We can't mention Yellowstone without speaking about Grand Teton. In our case we needed to drive around a bit to get here, but it was worth every extra minute for sure. Not because of the beauty of this park. It was very beautiful, but most of it was still closed. No, apparently Grand Teton is a wildlife Valhalla on its own. We still can't believe how much luck we had here. The day started with a bear jam for one male grizzly not far from the road (Awesome!). Then everyone moved to another spot where another grizzly had come out. We were delighted to set eyes on a grizzly mother with two cubs playing in the grass (Awesome²!). As with all bear spottings an outrageously big crowd was hanging around, but that didn't stop us from settling down and enjoying the view as long as possible. That meant until she came right at us to cross the road and the whole crowd had to move fast! Other wildlife of that day included 1 hiding moose, 1 hard working otter (yes!), 1 herd of bighorn sheep, some extra moose, 3 bald headed eagles and loads of pelicans. We finally got the wildlife we were craving for for so long.