Saturday, November 14, 2009

Summer in Yellowstone

Lower Falls of the Yellowstone River. Early in the season fellow photo guide, Doug Hilborn and I checked timing for catching the rainbow from this vantage point. It only lasts about 15 minutes so the challenge was to get our guests there in time. If conditions didn't allow a rainbow or we were late, there was an osprey nest below the look out.
Yellowstone National Park

Yellowstone, the world's first national park, is a diverse set of images. It is the ancient geological history. It is its status as an active volcano. It is abundant wildlife. It is water, in all its forms, from ice to steam. It is geysers, superheated water of geothermal features and steam rising from the cold waters of Yellowstone Lake into the even cooler air of a Fall morning. It is ice crystals on vegetation.
It is wildflowers, forests, open meadows, canyons, rivers, peaks. It is also the yellow vintage l936-38 open top touring buses that I drive. It is the visitors to the park and my fellow employees.
This year my assignment was a bit different from last year when I drove tours to the Beartooths and the Tetons. I missed those. But I had a new challenge. I did photo tours. In the past these have been 5 days a week out of both Lake and Old Faithful areas. This year I filled in the extra two days at each location to make the tours 7 days a week. I occassionally filled in on additional tours.
I continued to live in the employee RV park at Lake. I like the quieter, calmer setting of Lake to Old Faithful. But it was good to spend two days and nights a week at Old Faithful. I got to know that area of the park better and enjoyed sharing a cabin with Erica, step-on guide and bus washer. Great "roomie."

My cabin
Park Photography
The first government survey of what was to become YNP was led by geologist Dr. Ferdinand Vandiveer Hayden, a man named by Native Americans as "the man who runs picking up rocks," due to his energetic and enthusiastic pursuit of geology. Trained as a medical doctor, Hayden spent his time as a geologist. Brilliant, one of his most telling strokes of genius was including artists in his expedition crew. Thomas Moran, later to become a famous western painter, and William Henry Jackson, an early photographer, recorded the wonders of the Yellowstone region.
When Hayden made his report to Congress, he made sure the Congressmen had seen those photographs and some of the paintings in advance. In short order, Congress passed and the President signed the bill establishing our first national park.
In light of that proud and important photographic history, here are some of my visual images of Yellowstone. They are scattered over several posts so keep scrolling down.
Goose Lake and Bobby sox trees in September. Fellow driver\guide and photographer, Larry, and I did a bicycle and hike jaunt out to Fairy Falls. This scene was on the way and one of my favorite photos from the summer.

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