Have you been looking for a new trip idea? Are you looking for a bit of wonder and adventure? Yellowstone National Park in Wyoming may be your next destination! The park’s 3,500 square miles are full of thermal features, wildlife, and mountain wilderness. It has been preserved for its beauty and history, which spans thousands of years. The land was officially made into a national park in 1872 and has been amazing visitors ever since. Prepare yourself because a trip to Yellowstone may be one of the most memorable vacations you ever take.
Yellowstone is situated above an active volcano that heats hot springs, geysers, and mudpots on the land. Over 10,000 different hydrothermal features are active within the park. Geysers, Earth’s most exciting fountains, shoot hot, underground water hundreds of feet into the air. Old Faithful, the park’s most famous geyser, erupts around 20 times a day with regularity. Since Old Faithful is very popular, try to visit in the early morning hours before it gets too crowded. The park also features mudpots, which are bubbling pools of mud. They are said to be mesmerizing and very calming to watch. Beware! They don’t smell the best, but they are fun to observe. The park’s hot springs are a delight to witness as well. They are heated by the Earth’s magma and are steaming all throughout the day. Tiny microorganisms that thrive in hot temperatures give the springs their vibrant, bright colors. As tempting as it may seem to take a dip in one of the springs, it isn’t allowed. However, there are plenty of boardwalks that snake across the park to bring you as close to the thermal hot spots as possible.
Wildlife for Your Wild Side
An abundance of animals roam the grounds of Yellowstone all throughout the year. Bears, wolves, bison, sheep, elk, moose, and a variety of birds can be seen! What you can see varies by season and time of day. Early morning and evening are good times to see animals because they are up and about searching for food. Bears begin emerging from hibernation in March and April and can often be seen grazing in roadside meadows. Wolves can be seen during the winter because they are out of their dens at that time. They’re also easier to see on a snowy landscape. Don’t be surprised if you find yourself sharing the road with a herd of bison. They graze all throughout the park, as they are constantly eating, and can weigh up to 2,000 pounds. If you enjoy birdwatching, you’ll love the inhabitants of Yellowstone. Keep your eyes on the skies as you may encounter bald eagles! They are endangered, so spotting one is an amazing experience. Mountain chickadees, ospreys, and sandhill cranes make their home in the park as well. The park has strict rules for interacting with the animals. For safety, you must stay a certain number of yards away from them. Bears and wolves should be viewed from at least 100 yards away. You can view other wildlife from at least 25 yards away. Photography is encouraged, but the park stresses the importance of taking selfies without endangering yourself. It’s recommended that you bring along binoculars for better views.
Hiking, Biking, and Boating
Yellowstone features over 1,000 miles of trails, and there’s something for every level of hiker. There are trails that are perfect for easy strolls or longer and more strenuous walks. The more populated walks are the boardwalks, which weave through the thermal areas. If you’re interested in a longer day hike, you can start at the visitor center to get maps of the area. You can also get useful information about stream crossings and bear closures. Biking is a great way to get to know the countryside and witness stunning views along scenic paths. If you’re interested, you can purchase a bike tour that includes a hotel stay, picnic lunches, and a guided tour through the park. If boating is more to your liking, you can bring your own or rent one on Yellowstone Lake. You can fish or just cruise. Whichever way you choose to get around, exploring the park in all its grandeur may be the best thing you ever do.
With so many wonderful places to visit around the world, it’s easy to overlook the treasures within our shores. Yellowstone National Park is one of those treasures and is worth a visit any time of the year. Before your visit, consider a travel protection plan for your trip. Travel Insured plans are great for short or long trips and include benefits from trip cancellation to medical protection. Compare plans today at www.travelinsured.com. Happy travels!