Day Ten
Day Ten

Yellowstone National Park, WY to Billings, MT
June 22nd, 2004

High Point of the Day....
Low Point of the Day......
Brian - Beartooth Pass
Theresa - The hike toward Specimen Ridge
Brian & Theresa - none at all
Miles Traveled Today
Total Miles Traveled
Miles Theresa Drove
0 (702 Total)
Very sunny, rainy, snowy, haily
Price of Gas 
(average per gallon)
Night's Lodging
Where this Page was Uploaded
no fillup
Herds of bison, ground squirrels
Billings KOA
Billings, MT

Daily Didactic
It was another beautiful day in Yellowstone. We began at the lower elevation and much less chilly Mammoth Hot Springs campground. Theresa has had her eye on a hike up Specimen Ridge for a while, to see petrified forests and fossils. We headed toward the Roosevelt Tower area, on the road to the Northeast entrance, to find the trailhead. The northeast section of the park has few, if any, thermal features (what we in the know call geysers and hot springs) and has more open plains and glacier carved rolling rounded hills. We stopped at the "Specimen" pull out and began our little hike, and found out pretty quickly (at the area map a little way up the trail) that it was actually a twenty mile round trip. This was a little more than we had bargained for in a day hike and we settled for an alternate trek up a nearby ridge. The view was spectacular and it was nice to get in a second day of hiking.

We climbed back into the bus and continued out across the Lamar Flats, where we saw four herd of Bison and quite a few strays. On the recommendation of the park ranger at Mammoth Hot Springs, rather than head to Cody as we had planned, we headed over the 11,000 foot Beartooth Pass. With the northeast entrance at around 8,000 feet, it was a pretty steep climb and very windy toward the top. The bus puttered along like a trooper and the scenery looked like all of those Westward Expansion paintings. On the top, rain turned to snow and then to hail. Right over the top was the steepest pomalift/t-bar run we have ever seen, with a parking lot of snowboarders keeping it busy. We continued down on through Red Lodge and into Billings, securing a spot for the evening at the very nice Billings KOA, which turns out to be the first KOA in North America. Brian made some calls and found a local mechanic that works on air cooled VWs to take a look at the bus's noisy posterior and scheduled an appointment for tomorrow morning.

Daily Pictures (Slide Show)

Morning in Mammoth Hot Springs campground Theresa, operating the ice building
Coca Cola, here to meet your aesthetic requirements Road Shot around Roosevelt Tower
One of millions of ground squirrels Theresa pondering
Brian, celebrating the bigness of it all Brian, tired of celebrating bigness
It is tough to be a tree Road Shot around Lamar
One of four herd of bison along the road Montana welcomes us back
The climb up to Beartooth Pass Looking back down the switchbacks
The cornice on Beartooth Pass A little below that, the steepest pomalift Brian has ever seen
Switchbacks on the Billings side Seems like unecessarily narrowing your clientele
One stop shopping The Joliet peace monster
The bus with a local

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