Saturday, 22 February 2014


old Faithful in Wyoming’s Yellowstone National Park is undoubtedly the world's most recognizable geyser and was aptly named by an 1870 expedition for its remarkable consistency. Unlike most thermal features in the park, its heights, intervals and length of eruption have changed very little in 100 years. It erupts about every 92 minutes, or 18–21 times every day.
The Yellowstone region is the magical center of the universe. I first intuitively realized this when I was six years old on the first of many family summer vacations to the park. Every time I go back, when I get close to the park it hits me, and I can physically feel why the place is so special.
It became sort of a standing joke when I was growing up to ask Chris where our family should go on vacation. The answer was always "Yellowstone". I got my way more often than not too.

As the premier winter vacation destination in the Northern Rockies, Montana’s Yellowstone Country is known as much for its terrain as for its snowfall, which often exceeds over 400 inches per season, much of it dry, light powder. And it falls on four of the five largest Montana ski areas, including Big Sky Resort, Moonlight Basin, Bridger Bowl and Red Lodge Mountain. But that’s not it for things to do in the Winter in Yellowstone Country. There’s also phenomenal cross-country skiing at Lone Mountain Ranch, Bohart Ranch, Rendezvous Trail and within Yellowstone National Park. The nation’s first National Park also offers snowcoach tours, snowmobiling and winter wildlife spotting tours—which can include wolves, bison, eagles and a number of other fascinating creatures—as well as breath taking geothermal and physical features unique toYellowstone. And Montana’s Yellowstone Country offers the park’s only winter entrances that are accessible to vehicular traffic.

I was lucky enough to live and work in the park three summers and two winters. I worked housekeeping for TW/Amfac. I took hundreds of pictures during those three years. You can see a few of them. Or you can readabout a few of the more interesting things that happened when I was there. I found a few special secret places, but hey, if I told you and the rest of the world about them then they wouldn't be so special and secret anymore would they?

Although Old Faithful is neither the largest, nor highest geyser in Yellowstone, it’s by far the most regular. The time-sensitive column of boiling water normally reaches an average height of 130 in just 15 to 20 seconds. After about 20 more seconds, the water column lowers rapidly. The eruption ends with a few puffs of steam for an always appreciative crowd of visitors from across the globe. On average, about 5,000 to 8,000 gallons of water are shot out of the ground. For a vantage point away from the ground-level benches and viewing areas, hike up to Observation Point and take in this behemoth from 250 feet above; the view gives an entirely new perspective of the utter uniqueness of geysers.


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