07.24.15 Our journey to Yellowstone National Park on 7.21.15

26ba7_2df2We woke up early Tuesday, July 21st and planned to leave the park around 8 am. We stopped at the dump station to empty our tanks and to the water station to fill up our fresh water tank.   This was an opportunity we didn’t know we’d have when we planned to boondock so we gladly took advantage of it.  Unfortunately Roy filled the fresh water tank up with the water you’re supposed to use just to clean out your gray and lack tanks. This is considered contaminated water and not fit for human consumption. Oooops! He seldom make errors and  this one only cost us an hour of our time since he had to dump all that water and flush out the fresh water tank with clear good water and then fill it up.

So at 9:30 we pulled out of Gros Ventre Campground headed to Yellowstone and hopefully a great place to boondock for a few more days.

canyon campgrund signAt 6:00 pm (deliriously tired) we finally arrived at Canyon Campground (a National Forest Service park) where we’ll stay until Monday morning, July 27th. It is a beautiful campground with only 17 spots. We parked Dora right next to a huge mountain with beautiful tall mature pine trees and enormous boulders all around and of course sage bush.

The sign where we turned in says Rattlesnakes and Bears seen in this area. It is very beautiful here and very wilderness like yet has asphalt roads and is about 150 feet from a highway. I kind of think this is as wilderness as we’re going to get!

Our drive here was way longer than we anticipated since the roads through Yellowstone are narrow and extremely curvy. The beauty of the park is breathtaking.  However, poor Roy was so stressed the whole drive I don’t think he got to enjoy any of it, and I only enjoyed some of it. We are going back through the park (and it is a massive forest) in our truck and probably break the drive up into two days.

yellowstone entry signGetting into Yellowstone meant a brief wait in a line of cars.  It is $30 per vehicle for a seven day pass, but since we have a Senior Pass it was FREE!!!!!  Yay for being old!!!20150721_110526 (Small)

We saw close to a hundred bison in different places. You could tell where they were because dozens of cars were pulled off the side of the road to see them.   The first group of bison were not far from the road with some in the river. Across the river from the other but on our side of the road was one lonely bison and we got good pictures of him. You can see how large they are. To take the photo of the bison by himself we pulled up alongside him in the RV and I opened the door and snapped the photo.  Had I know about the lady that was just attacked this week by a bison when taking a selfie, I probably wouldn’t have been so brave!

20150721_131809 (Small)20150721_132348 (Small)20150721_132700 (Small)This is me somewhere along the ride!  I love waterfalls and when Roy said for me to get in the picture in front of the waterfalls I had to squint my eyes to see these tiny waterfalls!

20150721_113108 (Small)A lot of the ride that day was along Yellowstone Lake which is beautiful!20150721_121243 (Small)Several years ago a terrible forest fire killed a lot of the pines in Yellowstone.  They have since planted small ones that have grown a lot, but not enough to hide the dead ones.    Most of the park does not look like this but some parts do.20150721_141508 (Small)These are some of the sites that caused us to stop. We’ve since been back to each of the sights to enjoy them further.

20150721_141200 (Small)20150721_143223 (Small) 20150721_143236 (Small)20150721_152121 (Small)20150721_151813 (Small)We tried our best not to stop along the way since it was such a long drive but we got so overwhelmed with the sites we did stop a few times. In front of the beautiful old Mammoth Hot Springs Hotel were several mule deer (look like deer but larger) and they didn’t seem bothered at all by all the people passing by! They were there every time we passed by that hotel.

20150722_121611 (Small)20150722_121340 (Small) 20150722_121345 (Small) 20150722_121500 (Small)For RVers, if you look for Canyon Campground around Yellowstone there are two.  One is a National Parks Service (NPS) campground (like Gros Ventre was) where you pay to boondock and there are hundreds of spots.  The NPS campgrounds are inside Yellowstone National Park in Wyoming and take reservations but we couldn’t get one.

The Canyon Campground we are in is a United States Forest Service campground which you only pay $3.50 a night if you have a Senior Pass (which I’ll explain another time but highly recommend you get if you are 62 or older.)  and you boondock here. There are only 17 spots and it is a first come first service park.  This one is in Montana in Gallatin National Forest, just across the state line.  It’ is 15 miles north of Gardiner, MT on Highway 89.

We’ve finally gotten some internet service here so I’ll post this one and hope it goes out!  In the next few posts I’ll share the beauty and wonder that is around ever curve in Yellowstone!  This is absolutely the most naturally beautiful place we’ve been to.  God really outdid himself here!

Ya’ll come back now, ya’ hear! I will praise him psalm 28 7cooltext1838781539Click on the links below to go there!

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