We went to Yellowstone this year! Matt and I have a goal of doing all the national parks within a 12 hour drive of home. We’re probably not going to make that goal and this was actually more like 13 hours plus stops, but whatever.
We camped in Bridge Bay Campground. After a very long day of driving, we got to the park. Our campground was still about 1.5 hours from the entrance we used and we ended up stopping for wildlife on the road multiple times, including a mama and baby bison. We made it about 25 minutes before the check-in office closed.
We pitched our tent in the dark and got ready for a full week of fun! We saw geysers and mud pots and hot springs and elk and deer and bison and black bears and grizzlies and porcupines and crazy tourists and lakes and rivers. Lots of pictures below.
There were 3 bull elk that liked our campground. One morning, everyone was watching 2 in a field. We kept driving and the 3rd one was licking the heck out of a stack of picnic tables. “Guys! Someone spilled hot chocolate!” He was my favorite.
We usually prepped our own food but we did eat the breakfast buffet at the Old Faithful Lodge and it was quite delicious. I got my passport book stamped at 10 of the 14 locations within the park, so that was pretty good.
Overall, we spent most of our time watching animals and looking at a landscape that exists almost nowhere else in the modern world. Yellowstone feels like going back to the jurassic age.
We hopped over to Grand Teton for a day and you can read all about my moose hunt here. Very exciting for me.
Long list of places we went: Old Faithful (geyser, inn, lodge, general store, visitors’ center), Grand Prismatic Spring, Norris Geyser Basin, Lamar Valley, Mammoth Hot Springs (visitors’ center), Yellowstone Lake, Lake Lodge, Canyon Village, Grand Canyon of Yellowstone (North and South rims), Fishing Bridge, West Thumb, Fairy Falls, Petrified Tree, Mud Volcano, plus more I can’t remember right now. We ate delicious ice cream as many places as we could. We also ventured in to Grand Teton and drove through the northern part of the park to Jenny Lake.
87 mph top speed
2927.5 bugs killed on windshield
14 bug bites
28 hours driven to/from park
14.5 hours driven in park
30 mpg average
4 showers (2 each)
46.7 miles walked/hiked
4 naps taken during visitor center videos
1 moose sighting
1000s of bison
100s of elk
10s of bears
1 small green tent
2 happy campers