Yellowstone National Park Vacation Travel Guide | Expedia
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Yellowstone National Park Vacation Travel Guide | Expedia

Yellowstone National Park
stretches across the secluded north-west corner of Wyoming,
reaching into Idaho and Montana. Founded in 1872, Yellowstone
was the world’s first national park and now hosts over 4 million adventurers each year. A 12-hour drive from Seattle
or a five-hour drive from Salt Lake City, there’s no doubt that it’s a trek to get here, but the moment you step foot in this vast park, you’ll know it was worth every mile. With endless green prairies,
spectacular mountain ranges, and abundant wildlife, Yellowstone is the very best
of North American wilderness, wrapped up into a 2-million-acre gift for nature lovers. Yellowstone is proudly
managed by the National Park Service and its highlights are easily accessible by the loop road which can be reached from
each of the park’s five entrances. So, buckle up and get ready to
explore a land untouched by humanity. Yellowstone is a geothermal extravaganza that sits atop a slumbering super volcano, which is said to have violently
erupted over 60,000 years ago. Geologists have long debated the caldera’s origins, and theories abound as
to when the next big eruption is due. But don’t let the merchants of doom put you off, seismic activity is closely
monitored to ensure the safety of park visitors. One of the best places to
witness the geothermal activity bubbling beneath
Yellowstone is at Grand Prismatic Spring, just under 25 miles from the park’s west entrance. Admire the vivid pool from afar,
but don’t get any ideas about plunging in, these steaming waters can
reach temperatures near boiling. Just to the south is Old Faithful,
one of the most visited geysers in the world. Aptly named, Old Faithful punctually
spews boiling water and steam into the sky every 60 to 90 minutes. The explorers of yesteryear
once used Old Faithful as their laundry, placing garments at the vent, which were blasted into the sky
and thoroughly washed by the boiling water. This landscape is not only an
impressive display of geothermal activity; it is also laced with lush forests, rivers, and lakes. Yellowstone Lake is the tranquil heart of the park, and outdoor enthusiasts congregate here for all sorts of recreational activities. Cast a line in the icy, high altitude waters, …. venture out in a kayak, .… or explore the lapping shores on foot The park is not only rich
with legends and precious views; it is also teeming with wildlife. Yellowstone has long been
a refuge for America’s native animals, and the park’s greatest success
story is the restoration of the mighty bison. Today, Yellowstone is home to
the planet’s largest remaining wild herd. In Hayden Valley, a close encounter
with this sturdy beast is almost guaranteed. So, remember to keep your eyes on the road! One of the most dramatic sights
in the park is the Yellowstone River. Fed by Yellowstone Lake, the river winds its way
north before plummeting 300 feet off Lower Falls and into
the Grand Canyon of Yellowstone. Leave your car and embark
on the short hike to Artist Point, one of the best places to sit and marvel at the immensity of this natural wonder. Natural beauty can lift the spirit like nothing else, and there are countless places in Yellowstone which seem to be designed
for travelers to simply sit back and admire. Unfold a picnic chair at Pebble Creek and let the sound of its rushing
waters clear your mind and soothe your soul. Still in the park’s north, dense trees open out into
rolling prairies in Lamar Valley. Its lush fields are watered by babbling brooks and framed by a backdrop of snowcapped peaks. Bring your binoculars to catch
a closer glimpse of more wild bison, along with Yellowstone’s other native animals. When evening sets in, set up your tent at one of the many campsites or head out of the park’s north entrance to Gardiner. This gateway town is the
perfect haven for weary travelers. Warm yourself with a hearty meal at one of
the many saloons before continuing your epic Yellowstone adventure. In Yellowstone, a step in any direction
is like a journey to another continent, and sometimes… another planet. Just south of Gardiner is Mammoth Hot Springs. The springs carry minerals which
solidify into ever-changing limestone terraces. The ethereal formations are breathtaking reminder that even in the natural world, change is the great constant of life. Make your way south to Norris, an area surrounded
by hundreds of geothermal wonders. Listen to clay bubbling and boiling from the depths of the earth at Artists’ Paintpots. Wander boardwalks set
just inches from the trembling surface of Norris Geyser Basin
and hold your breath as you advance through billowing clouds of vapor
rising from beneath the planet’s crust. Yellowstone National Park
has long been a land of epic horizons, legendary stories and endless renewal. As the grandfather of all national parks, its legacy has inspired
wildlife preservation across the globe. Today, a trip into the heart of
Yellowstone is like a journey back in time. A journey to the great landscape
of America before Europeans arrived. It’s a journey to creation itself.


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