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Wandering WY: Early Spring in Yellowstone National Park

Updated: Nov 8, 2020

This spring I visited Yellowstone National Park shortly after the East entrance opened. The primary reason for this early season trip was an Instameet with the National Park Service and Yellowstone Forever at Mammoth Hot Springs.

The weather wasn’t looking very nice for the park but I didn’t want to miss out on this great meet up! So I packed up my cooler, my sweatshirt, and my camera in my little Subaru and hit the road.

I drove in through the East Entrance from springtime in Cody to the snow and the ice just starting to break on Yellowstone Lake! I don’t know why I didn’t expect that but it was kind of a shock to see so much white fluffy stuff in mid-May.

After living around Yellowstone my whole life, I’ve come to the opinion that you have to pick what you want to stop and see in the park. You either have to get really excited every time a tourist pulls over for a buffalo hoping it’s a bear or you have to ignore the wildlife and stop for the geysers. There is simply no way to see all of Yellowstone even if you’re there all summer much less for a few hours! Now I’m not saying that if you do see a bear close enough to the road so that you can get a great picture that you shouldn’t stop… I’m just saying that sometimes the tourists stop for an antelope picture and I promise you will see about a million more of those all across the great state of Wyoming if you really want a picture. It’s probably safer to stop for that antelope picture where there isn’t a cluster of excited visitors blocking the road and your shot!

This visit I decided I would only be stopping for geysers since I was in a hurry to get up to Mammoth. Ironically, every time I wanted to get out it started raining again. 😂 Just before Old Faithful, I stopped to walk around the Paint Pots. Even with the rain, it was fun to see how active and colorful these hot springs and bubbling mud pots were this year.

At Old Faithful, I was hoping that I’d timed my trip just right that I could walk around the lower loop of geysers before watching the main event then get back on the road. Although it continued to rain the whole time I was there, it did end up working out! One gentleman saw me on the trail and told me I was going to get awfully wet if I kept walking through the geysers 😂 I laughed and pointed at my sweatshirt, “I’m already there!” He shrugged and continued on his way toward the lodge.

Finally, I reached my destination! I was a little early in Mammoth which was perfect to refill my water bottle and take a quick restroom break. Then we all met up at the bottom of the boardwalk. The National Park Service Ranger who addressed us is actually their social media specialist! He and other professional photographers from the region gave great tips on where to go for the best wildlife shots and even gave us a little historical background of Mammoth Hot Springs. Exchanging cards with other Public Relations, Social Media Specialists, and bloggers from around the area I made a few new friends.

We walked up on top of the Mammoth terraces and took pictures until the sun went down. Driving up into Montana to stay with family for the night I thought how absolutely blessed I’ve been to grow up in this part of the world.

I don’t necessarily have to spend hundreds of dollars to go to other places for adventure! I can spend infinite amounts of time adventuring in my own back yard!

Thank you, fellow adventurers! You can follow the lilmissbearpaw blog page on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter @lilmissbearpaw for sneak peeks into upcoming posts and my adventures. This will also be a great place to share your own adventures!

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