Yellowstone in Winter

After visiting Mount Rushmore, Crazy Horse, and Devils Tower Monuments, we arrived at Yellowstone. Most of the roads were closed because it was so late in the season. I have been to Yellowstone years ago in late September and the place was extremely crowded, despite the fact that it was technically the off-season. Although I was disappointed we wouldn’t get to see many of the sights the park is known for, experiencing Yellowstone covered in snow gave me a new perspective. Most of the time it felt like we had the whole place to ourselves.

Daniel in snow Petrified tree walk

 

Face-Hugger Mammoth Springs Road

 

 

Mammoth Springs Microbes

Close-up photo of the mineral and microbe deposits in the thermal waters of Mammoth Springs

Mammoth Springs Macro Moon Rise in Starry Sky Abstract

Yellowstone waterfall.jpg

 

Buffalo CrossingCoyote in Yellowstone

There was only fifty miles of road open to us, so we drove through the park, turned around and came back to enjoy a cheeseburger and beer in town. The next day we took one more trip into the park and stopped at a bridge to explore the Yellowstone River.

 

 

 

 

Yellowstone River in Contrast and Color

We headed into Grand Tetons and even less of the road was open to us. Thick cloud cover blocked our view. We were looking for the Grand Tetons and expected such a large mountain to be easily visible. Luckily the clouds moved for us just long enough to get a glimpse before the peaks disappeared for good.

Grand Tetons in cloud cover

Grand tetons in the cloud.jpg

We traveled through Teton Pass under cover of night with pine trees and snow covered mountains lit by moonlight. It was slow driving in a car on icy roads. We stayed in Jackson Hole and prepared for our next stop.

 

The Teton Pass had closed due to inclement weather and we would have to re-route. We drove to Salt Lake City Utah through a blizzard. It was a white-out and we followed semi-trucks at a distance. Chain law went into effect and all the semi-trucks pulled off the road to chain up. We were on our own. It was one hell of a ride and we white knuckled it the whole way. There were many wrecks and stranded drivers off the side of the road. We got lucky as three snow plows waited for us to pass and came out right behind us to create a buffer zone for any following traffic. Then the snow plows started to catch up. Any touch of the brakes and we started sliding. It was a long and terrifying ride, but we finally arrived in Salt Lake City and pulled into the first gas station to let our nerves settle. I laughed as I kicked and scraped all the ice off the headlights, only to look around and realize the storm hadn’t arrived here. The other cars were spotless.

P1320967

We found a hotel for the night and tried to visit the Salt Lake the following morning before we carried on. As soon as we left the city the blizzard and ice made the roads treacherous. We got off the exit for the Salt Lake and could only stare at the parking lot. Even though it wasn’t much of a hill, it was enough to know we’d be stuck there if we entered. “Well, there’s the Great Salt Lake.”

We got back onto the highway just in time. All six lanes of traffic had shut down and were blocked off. All traffic was being detoured onto a one lane exit. It was an absolute mess, and if we hadn’t gotten back onto the highway when we did, we would have been really stuck like the mass of traffic behind us. Several police cars, fire trucks, and ambulances were headed down into the part of the highway that had been shut down. We never did see the wreck, but after what we had seen already, a pile up was our assumption. It was a thrilling ride from Yellowstone to Salt Lake City, but we weren’t ready to do it again. Luckily the sun came back to greet us as we entered into Zion National Park.

Next Installment: Zion National Park

 

The Blood of Winter Demons of Lost Souls

 

Check out johnozmore.com for artwork, sculptures, writing, and photography from the author or to purchase the Dark Fantasy novel, “The Blood of Winter” from Amazon, available in paperback and Kindle versions.

 

E-book versions of the Dark Fantasy, “The Blood of Winter” are also available for Apple, Barnes and Noble, Kobo, Scrib’d, Angus & Robertson, and other major retailers.

 

 

One Comment on “Yellowstone in Winter

  1. Pingback: Arches National Park, Utah | Oddly_Eccentric

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