To the unearthly Grand Tetons and Yellowstone National Park

Hello everyone! In today’s post, I’m going to take you to the First National Park in the US (and rightfully so) – Yellowstone and Grand Tetons. I visited these two places during the last week of May. So here’s a fun fact about Yellowstone – the park sits on top of an active supervolcano. That’s why you see so many geysers, mud volcanos and hot springs all over the place! It’s a very unique landscape altogether! On the other hand, the Grand Tetons are the most majestic mountain ranges I’ve seen till date! The Grand Teton National Park is only 10 miles south of Yellowstone and is a must visit if you’re in that area.

Moving on to the itinerary, the most economical way to get to Yellowstone is to fly to Salt Lake City and then drive to the park. This drive is about 6 hours so if you have 4 days to spare, this’s the best option. We drove from SLC to Grand Teton and stayed there for a night. If you’re just going to stop at viewpoints on your way and take pictures, a day is more than enough to spend in the Grand Teton National Park. We spent about 2.5 days in Yellowstone National Park and stayed near the North and West Entrances of the park. The weather was clear/sunny on almost all the days! Here’s our itinerary –

Day 1 – Grand Teton National Park

Day 2 – Grand Canyon of Yellowstone and Lamar Valley

Day 3 – Mammoth Springs, all the geysers and hot springs

Day 4 – Grizzly and wolf conservatory, West Yellowstone

Day 1 – Grand Teton National Park

We arrived at SLC late evening and stayed there on the first night. Next morning we started driving North towards the Grand Tetons National Park and reached there around mid-afternoon. The drive was very beautiful as we passed a lot of small towns and countryside landscape. Once you reach the park, there’s a 42 mile scenic road that covers most of the scenic spots. We stopped at the following points – Chapel of transfiguration, mormon barn, Oxbow bend turnout, Snake River overlook and Jackson Lake Dam. By the end of the day, we were pretty confident that we had seen the Grand Tetons from all different angles and directions 😀 We stayed in a cabin at the Signal Mountain Lodge that night which had an amazing view of the tetons overlooking the Jackson Lake.

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A park near Jackson Hole town on the way to Grand teton NP
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Entrance to the Park
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Sleeping Indian Overlook
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The famous Mormon Barn
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The Snow Capped Peaks
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Oxbow Bend Turnout

Day 2 – Grand Canyon of Yellowstone, Lamar Valley

The second day, we followed this route through the park. We spent considerable amount of time in the Grand Canyon of yellowstone area. We stopped at Artists point, hiked to the top of the lower falls (you have to hike down for about 1.5 miles and the climb up was pretty steep so wear proper shoes/clothes). The view of the falls from this point was simply breathtaking :O From there, off we went on a drive through the Lamar valley to catch a glimpse of Yellowstone’s rich wildlife. We saw herds and herds of bison, some even made us wait for them to cross the road 😛 We also spotted a couple of coyotes and moose. But the mama bear with her two cutest cubs undoubtedly stole the show. We watched the cubs play so happily with their mommy for a good 10 min, before they disappeared behind the bushes.

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The Artists point
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View from the top of the lower falls
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The Brim of the lower falls
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Black Bear
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Hundreds of Bison in the Lamar Valley
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Coyote!
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Posers! 😀
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Bear cub standing on it’s hind legs ❤
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Mama Bear observing something at a distance
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Bison!

Day 3 – Mammoth Springs, all the geysers and hot springs

Ah well, what can I say about this day ? Full of vibrant colors, springs and geysers, every single place was a visual treat!!! Our first stop was at the Mammoth Springs – we stood mesmerized looking at the beautiful formations, and water trickling down so gracefully through these rocks, shaping them as it did so. Next stop was at the “Old Faithful Geyser” – this guy does keep up to his name by being very punctual with his eruptions 😀 The day we went, the prediction was every 45 minutes, so we conveniently fitted our lunch between two episodes of the geyser in live action. We watched as the water reached a whooping 150m up  – naturally happening water fountain!!

From there, we covered a few more spots on our way up North. Biscuit basin, fountain pot – these looked like a huge painter’s palette. And finally the Grand Prismatic Spring –  I have never seen such a blend of colors – still in awe of these brilliant nature’s creations. That night we went Glamping at Under the Canvas, West Yellowstone. The tents had the most comfortable king size beds and comforters. It wasn’t too expensive and the views from our tent were amazing! You can find our route here.

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Mammoth Hot Springs

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Geysers
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Biscuit Basin
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Old Faithful Geyser eruption
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Biscuit Basin
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Mini Morning Glory 😀
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Grand Prismatic Spring!

Day 4 – Grizzly and wolf conservatory, West Yellowstone

The last day, we only had time to cover this Grizzly and Wolf Discovery park, before driving back to Salt Lake City. But this park offered us more than enough to feel complete for the day. This place serves as a habitat for rescued bears and wolves that are no longer able to sustain themselves in the wild for various reasons. Here again, we were lucky to witness two bear siblings playing by the water pool 😀 And thanks to this place, we could also rule wolves off our checklist (as it is impossible to spot them otherwise during this time of the year).

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How Gorgeous is this wolf ❤
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Bear hug!

Hope you guys enjoyed reading this post 🙂 I’ll see you next week with a long due beauty post 🙂

Until next time,

Mal

 

 

 

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