Heart of Yellowstone
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-Cornelius Hedges, explorer who according to legend suggested the idea of the Yellowstone area as a national park
Day 6 and we are packed up and on the road again to another part of Yellowstone NP. Our first stop was the Paint Pots area where we were amazed by a huge mud pot and many geysers, hot springs and fumaroles.
Later we arrived at the legendary birthplace of the national park concept, where the Firehole and Gibbon Rivers join to create the Madison River. According to legend the men of the Washburn expedition of 1870 shared their awe at the wonders they had seen and suggested what should be done with this magnificent land. (See quote) A lovely, peaceful place to just relax, reflect and thank God for the people who had the foresight to save this beautiful place for future generations.
Our group then drove on to the Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone where we took a short hike, marveling at views of the Lower Falls. Later we were awed by the Upper Falls at Artist's Point about which Thomas Moran, landscape painter, said the view was "beyond the reach of human art." Though the canyon walls are multi-colored we learned that Yellowstone is not named for the color of the rock but after the Indian name for the river.
A stop at the Canyon Visitor and Education Center was pleasant---especially the ice cream shop---moosetracks for Anne and buffalo chip for John!
We arrived late afternoon at the Yellowstone Lake Hotel, not quite as nice as the last two. The highlights of dinner? Steak and chocolate caldera for dessert!
After dinner our bus driver, Sean, took us out on a photo safari through Hayden Valley. This was way above and beyond his driving duties. We saw a coyote, a large herd of elk and many bison, along with the ever-abundant Canadian geese.
Another busy and wonder-full day!