Proof Frontier Project: Lacie Landrum
The Oldest National Park
On day one, we ventured North to from West Yellowstone. The first stop was at the Artists Paintpots in Gibbon Geyser Basin. While on this easy 0.6-mile trail we admired a wide variety of pools ranging drastically in color and textures. Climbing the short loop trail led to an overlook of the basin that was well worth the time and minimal effort.
From here our journey led us back south to the Norris Geyser Basin, the hottest geyser basin in Yellowstone. We chose to explore the Porcelain Basin which lead us down into the valley of the region. Varying temperatures and pH levels lead to drastic differences in the appearance of each pool. Winding “streams” of hydrothermal water were particularly stunning.
On day two we traveled northeast to The Grand Canyon of Yellowstone to admire the iconic Lower Falls from Artist Point lookout. This impressive waterfall reaches a height of 308 feet and contains the largest volume of water in the Rocky Mountains. We were fortunate enough to spot quite a bit of wildlife on this day with some bison strolling on the road and a grizzly bear snacking next to the river.
Our third and final day took us south of West Yellowstone toward some of the most iconic portions of the park. Beginning at the Fountain Paint Pot and Firehole Lake Drive in the Lower Geyser Basin. This region is diverse, widespread, and easily accessible. We saw LOTS of hot water and several geysers on this day.
From there we continued to the Midway Geyser Basin in search of Grand Prismatic Spring. We wandered the belly of Midway Geyser Basin and were astonished by the amount of steam that was rolling off of the various massive springs. In search of a view of the entire Grand Prismatic Spring, we hiked up to the overlook via the Fairy Falls Trailhead. This was well worth the detour and gave us an entirely new appreciation for the vastness of the spring (it was also nice to escape the crowds). Our final day commenced with a monumental viewing of an Old Faithful eruption (when in Rome).