We slept in until 10 am, and woke to find it snowing. Giant fluffy snow! Funny thing is, both Bode and I woke up in the middle of the night because we were hot. The dangers of over-dressing to sleep in sub-freezing weather.
The park ranger at Old Faithful had told us that the moose were mostly in the Tetons. They preferred old-growth forest and since Yellowstone had a major fire in 1988, there weren’t many to be found. The tall charred old-growth trees are still abundant, sticking up 50 feet or so higher than the new growth.
Early in the trip we had proclaimed that we would find a moose no matter what. Canada wasn’t any help, Yellowstone was no help, so we went south to the Grand Tetons. We followed the road the ranger had recommended, but I had a hard time looking for moose. The mountains were so beautiful. The clouds covered the very top of the Tetons, but the views were still breath-taking.
We hit the Visitors Center at the south end of the park to see what gives…no animals spotted. They directed us to a route just south of the park. We pulled out maybe 100 feet from the Visitors’ Center there were two beauties just standing there waiting for us. Success!
We took this as a good sign and kept driving the recommended route. About 5 miles later, herds of bison in the distance. Check!
Then, as we headed back up around and toward the north again, a herd came right across the road in front of us. We sat through it for a while, but then there was a small break in the bison and Jason decided to drive through. I had a few fears that the van would be gored, but luckily they just looked at us. Also, bison = buffalo.
A few more of Bode’s shots from this day:
Since we’d seen all the wildlife on our checklist, we decided to hit the road. Outside of the Yellowstone, the trees go away and the rest of the way across Wyoming saw the occasional painted hill, but otherwise there wasn’t much. There’s a lot of road between Yellowstone/Tetons and South Dakota. A LOT OF ROAD!!!! We did witness a real cattle drive and cowboys, right on the highway.
We had to make the executive descision to bypass Colorado, where we hoped to visit some friends, but maybe we’ll swing back through before we head south of the border. It’s on the way from Texas to Mexico, right?