Recently I made a a short 4 day trip to Yellowstone- I have always heard how incredible Yellowstone is, but I am always skeptical of the hype. I went in with average expectations- well let me be honest, I used to watch a lot of Yogi Bear and I was half expecting a bear come by and steal my picnic basket! 🙂
So after a set of long connecting flights and a long drive, I finally got to Yellowstone, and the drive blew me away. The river on one side and mountains on the other completely blew me away. We ran into a couple who pointed out a bald eagle- it made me aware of another layer of appreciation. Everywhere we went, we kept an eye out for wildlife- we spotted bisons, deers, coyotes and even a black bear!! One unforgettable and scary moment happened as we were driving around- we turned into a stretch of the road and we were greeted by a bison that was heading right for us. We froze with fear, there was no way out-with cars on one side and the mountains on the other. The cars on the other side stopped, and we waited to see how the bison would react- thankfully it turned just before our car and headed on the other side of the street. It was the most scary, yet unforgettable sight ever!
My tips on travelling to Yellowstone:
– Take a week off– Yellowstone park is across a large area, and there is a change in landscape between areas. So plan a week trip at least, stay in different areas across Yellowstone park and explore the landscape and scenes it has to offer.
– Plan ahead– I am not a planned traveler, but my family is- they knew the must see places and planned an itinerary that covered all the main attractions. It is one of the places that needs a bit of planning, just so you can cover all the main highlights at your own pace.
– Carry a real camera– A personal lesson learned the hard way- phone cameras aren’t enough- get a real camera!
– Layer up– I was always too cold or too warm. In September at least, the weather changes all day-you start cold, it gets really warn in the afternoon and by evening it is cold again.
– Carry a binocular– Hayden Valley is a great location to spot wildlife- from bears to bisons to elks and wolves. But it is a massive valley, and from a distance you can’t tell one animal from the other- binoculars are a must!
The stunning mountains of various colors, the breathtaking beauty of the springs, the excitement of surprise sightings of animals, the ever present Yellowstone river- all made the trip an unforgettable one!
Here are some phone camera shots that don’t capture even a tenth of the beauty of Yellowstone…