The Native Americans called it “Burning Mountains.”
They thought an evil spirit lived among the meadows, rivers, forests, and towering mountains. If you witnessed the geysers or stepped into one of the scalding pools – you might think so too.
But good spirits live here. Animal spirits. Nature spirits.
I have just returned from my first (long overdue) trip to Yellowstone National Park. It is magnificent.
I traveled with my friend and fellow gardener, Maria, and her son. There were bets against our compatibility as journeying companions as we fuss and bother like two sisters when we are in the garden. But when it comes to travel, we are surprisingly compatible. Up at dawn to catch the sunrise and the wolves.
Chasing all day after animal sightings, we put 800 miles on the car – mostly in the park.
Fourteen-hour days flew by soaking up the park’s beauty –
From its barren, fossilized landscapes,
To its turquoise pools,
And expansive valleys filled with roaming bison, long-horn sheep, pronghorn, elk, coyotes, bears – and if you are very lucky, wolves.
Yellowstone is home to 67 different mammal species –
and a few birds as well.
As a photographer – I am deeply humbled. I lack the equipment or the instincts of my traveling companions for spotting and anticipating the animals’ moves.
But you don’t need to see the whites of their eyes to appreciate their place in the landscape.
Or the poetry of tenderness in such a rugged and wild place.
They loom so large in front of us –
but we are all just specks in nature’s place.
You can understand how people who live in this wide-open country have little understanding or appreciation for “city folk.” It is a harsh, unforgiving existence – but filled with an indescribable and addictive beauty.
It is hard to leave.
And I will return.
“Take nothing but pictures.
Leave nothing but footprints.
Kill nothing but time.”
27 thoughts on “Yellowstone”
My favorite place on earth and you captured it beautifully.
And now I understand why!
Thank you, Jim!
Wonderful photography, and such an amazing National Park. What a special time you surely enjoyed!
I have a lot to learn…but inspiration abounds! Thank you, Debra.
Wow! Thank you for such perspective.
Darn good photos! I’m jealous!!
Don’t look too closely! Thank you. 🙂
We will definitely return. It was a wonderful trip and now I have this blog to look back on to remember not only the beauty of Yellowstone but the wonderful experience of traveling with a friend and my son.
Great time. Great memories!
Yellowstone is on my travel list. What an extraordinary place. I’m glad you managed so many animal sightings (and marvelous photos).
We traveled “off-season” to avoid the summer crush…I highly recommend it!
Makes me want to get the short bus and live in a rolling home for a few years.
Nope…we’re not letting you go.
What an amazing place and thank you for sharing these wonderful images – it is so lovely to see the animals in their natural environment 🙂💖🐺
Wow! These photos are amazing! I so appreciate this post. I’m not a traveler, due to health issues, and this is a place I’ve never been but always wanted to see. Your photos and words bring it to life and I thoroughly have enjoyed this ‘trip’ with you as my guide! Thank you so much! ❤
Glad I could take you there virtually, Mary!
Thank you for this moving tribute to this precious place!
These photos are breathtaking. Thank you for sharing your gifts with us…
Thank you for taking us on your trip – beautifully descriptive in both words and photos.
Absolutely beautiful, what an amazing experience captured so thoughtfully!
What a beautiful collection of photos of one of our most beautiful sites that we should protect by all means. 🙂
OMG, these photos are like looking at National Geographic…. thank you so much for sharing. Outstanding.
It’s so beautiful, I really love this kind of places, full of life and energy.