Thursday, October 1, 2009


Last week I visited Yellowstone National Park for the first time. I definitely hope it wasn’t the last.

Of course I’d heard of Yellowstone all my life. Was aware of Old Faithful. Figured it would be fun to see.

But the park’s so much more than that.

It’s a huge expanse of protected land that will never see development, and should never see development. It’s too amazing, too precious, as it is. And that’s something that I, a real estate lawyer, seldom say.

It’s numerous geysers smaller and larger than Old Faithful, some less and others more predictable.

It’s hot springs and boiling pools of water in gorgeous, concentric rings of brilliant colors. It’s naturally formed steps of travertine rock. It’s dragon’s breath puffing from caves and swiftly flowing rivers. It’s mountains covered by lodgepole pines and other trees, with wide, rolling fields below.

It’s large, lumbering bison (not buffalo, BTW, which come mostly from Asia and Africa) who appear to enjoy lumbering along the yellow line in the center of the two-lane roads through the park, ignoring the rules applicable to people to stay yards away from the wildlife.

It’s elk, who also appear frequently in the fields and woods, and along the roads. It’s beavers, who create dams in the rivers and occasionally appear atop them to check out who’s watching.

It’s bears and wolves, animals I only got to see in an educational venue in West Yellowstone. They didn’t appear to me in the wild, unfortunately. But that gives me yet another excuse to return.

Of course Yellowstone inspired me to come up with some story ideas. Don’t know if they’ll ever expand into a book or not, but I most certainly hope so!

Have you ever been to Yellowstone? What’s your favorite memory?


Betty Hechtman said...

I've never been to Yellowstone, but it's on my list. Your description makes it sound fabulous. How fantastic to see so many animals. All I ever see at Yosemite are raccoons and I could see those in my backyard.

Linda O. Johnston said...

Even common animals are fun there, Betty. My husband took a fantastic photo of a chipmunk. We also saw a squirrel dashing back and forth across the walkway, "caching" pinecones for the winter, a ranger told us.

Janie Emaus said...

I love Yellowstone. We were there not too long ago and my husband was about 2 feet from a moose!

Your descriptions brought back all those wonderful memories.

Linda O. Johnston said...

We unfortunately didn't see any moose, Janie, but some of the antlers on the elk were awesome!

Terri Thayer said...

Nice post, Linda. I want to go, too now.