Where It’s Not — Part Three

IMG_0172In the morning, I drove through the tunnel, past Mummy Cave, and the BB Dam again.  About the time I stopped to pay my entrance fee to Yellowstone Park, I was struck by a blaze —  the blinding kind you get before a migraine, if you’re subject to auras.IMG_0231

At home my remedy would have been to boil water, brew green tea with half a capsule of feverfew, and hit a dark room with an eye mask.  On a 2-lane winding highway, I popped a cola for caffeine and downed Excedrin, and took a time out at a pull-out.  IMG_0258Then I spent more time at the ranger station/stuffed animal museum.  In the shade.

IMG_0240The ranger called the lone bison I’d seen a “fed-up bull” —  fed up of fighting the young bulls in the herd, and at an age where he prefers to go it alone.

IMG_0242There were 5 fires burning in Yellowstone Park at the time,  a few pull-outs were closed, but no roads closed that day.   I remembered the summer of 1988 and the massive fires in Yellowstone.  We could smell the smoke all the way over in Minnesota.

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Fishing Bridge

So far, going solo hadn’t been a problem (except for getting creeped out by a guy in a van who asked me where I was from.  He had just been staring at my license plate, so I thought it was not a real question.  This happened back at the Oregon Trail ruts and Register Cliff where we seemed to be the only tourists out in the 105 degree weather.  Not a good sign.  Maybe it was nothing, but  I didn’t like being followed.)

West Thumb of Yellowstone Lake

West Thumb of Yellowstone Lake

Another reason I’m going to bring Mr. W next time came about at Isa Lake.

Lily Pads at the Continental Divide?  Is there a frog?

Lily Pads at the Continental Divide? Is there a frog?

I really wanted to wade into the lily pads to see what was at the end of an under-water marker, but a couple (searchers??)  from Salt Lake City was kinda killin’ time, like they were waiting for me to leave.

I won, but then realized, typical female, I didn’t have the right shoes.  IMG_0277

Also, I saw strange underwater bugs, a possible fluke-wiry worm, and a very fast little pond-hugging, mole-nosed rodent running towards me.  The picture that was supposed to of him is a blur of me jumping out of his way.

Yikes!

Yikes!

I don’t think I screamed.

From there, not far but too far to walk, I arrived at Old Faithful at the perfect time.  People were streaming towards it so I parked and joined them.  Another geyser was putting on a show at the same time.  Serendipity strikes again.

And then, something else.  Remember I left home without a GPS?  The only place I might have needed it this trip was in the parking lot at Old Faithful Lodge and Visitor Center.  It’s changed in the last 15 years apparently.  IMG_0292  The other thing about migraines is the mental shadow they leave you with.  It took me an extra 15 minutes (or so) to find my car, and then I scared a poor family picnicking next to it when the alarm went off.

IMG_0294I passed another lone bison as I continued west.  My heart goes out to the old and lonely.

On to the much discussed Firehole River and Canyon.  Is it “Where Warm Waters Halt”?  I couldn’t say.

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And then, of course, the much touted Madison River, which had lots of giant boulders lying around.IMG_0327

I tarried as much as I wanted that day.  I had a reservation for that night in West Yellowstone, so no need to hurry.  Just tried to absorb the beauty and if a potential solution to one of the TTOTC  9 clues presented itself, all the better.  IMG_0321

No treasure yet, but so far, so good.  Any day that doesn’t involve a trip to the hospital is a big plus.

2 thoughts on “Where It’s Not — Part Three

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