Thursday, November 7, 2013

Beaver Pond Loop and Upper Loop, Yellowstone NP

The Beaver Pond Loop is a 6 mile trail which starts behind the Mammoth Hot Springs Lodge.  It winds up the hill and through a meadow before coming to a series of small ponds, never saw any beavers though.  Then through a patch of woods before trailing back down.
First thing we saw upon reaching the top of the hill was this elk.

There was a series of these small ponds.

There was this small wooden bridge which went across the end of the pond.

The next wildlife we saw was this grouse.

Then another young elk.
Even though we didn't see any bears (which we were warned by several other hikers that bears had been sighted earlier that day), it was a great hike.

When I was at the Grand Tetons earlier in the summer, I drove the entire lower loop, but didn't drive the upper loop.  This was the what I saw on my trip of the upper loop.

The cliff was named for the Shoshone Indians, who were also known as Sheepeaters.  This basalt cliff formed the vertical columns nearly 500,000 years ago.

Roaring Mountain

All alongside of the road were signs of the volcanic activity which is still going on today.

Built in 1886, this was the U.S. Army outpost for the cavalry soldiers assigned to protect the new park.

Wandering through Norris Basin

Fumeroles or steam vents are the hottest spots in the park, and have been registered at 280 degrees F.

Whale Mouth

Steamboat Geyser, which last erupted July 31, 2013.

The Lower Falls from Inspiration Point.

Looking downstream from Inspiration Point.  Notice the intense colors on the cliffs.

Tower Falls

These herds of buffalo (or American Bison) are great at stopping traffic along the road.

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