Yellowstone National Park

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Yellowstone National Park


Old Faithful, Steamboat, Fishing Cone, Big Gumper -- head for Yellowstone National Park if you want to know more! These are the names given to the amazing geo-thermal phenomena here -- geysers and volcanoes which fume and spew out hot water, steam and boiling mud. The first national park in the country, Yellowstone is also extremely popular. Battle with the summer crowds if you must, but do not miss the unforgettable experience of seeing a host of wild life eking out their existence in this surrealistic landscape. Noisy geysers letting of steam, cool lakes, magnificent waterfalls, bubbling mud pools, colorful wildflowers, enormous herds of bisons and elks, lonely bears, rumbling volcanoes -- the Yellowstone National Park has all this and more!! Old Faithful, the most popular geyser is named for its consistency in spewing out steam and water every 80 minutes. Walk along the trails connecting to the other geysers and hot springs and hopefully, you will be in time for the twice-a-day eruption of the Grand geyser. Walk along Firehole River, which is thirty miles north of Old Faithful and take in the awesome Grand Prismatic Spring, the Excelsior Geyser Crater and the Fountain Paint Pot with its a muddy bubbling brew. The Norris Geyser basin boasts of the Steamboat - the tallest geyser at 400 ft, Echinus Geyser, - the largest acid water geyser and the jewel-like Emerald Spring, so named because of the beautiful blue and yellow colours of the water. Mammoth Hot Springs live up to their name and are characterized by multi-colored bacterial species in the steaming waters. The Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone is striking- its red and rust rocky face and the two beautiful waterfalls, the Upper Falls and the Lower Falls best viewed from interestingly named observation points such as Artists Point and Inspiration Point. Walk along Uncle Tom's trail to take a closer look at the Lower Falls. Pristine and deep, the Yellowstone Lake, the largest alpine lake in the U.S offers excellent fishing and boating. In summer one can actually take a boating or fishing expedition I the lake. At Fishing Cone, earlier tourists actually cooked the fish they caught in the lake! North of the lake, sulphur fumes assail you at Mud Volcano, a bleak and desolate area where the earth seethes and gurgles quite ominously. Walk along this barren stretch till the Sour Lake, aptly named for the lack of anything attractive here. You can also get off the beaten track and explore the park on lesser-known trails. Be sure to consult park rangers before you do so and take enough provisions and a good map.

Best time to visit

Summer is the most popular season with really pleasant weather - most tourist come here from mid-June to mid-September. Winter is cold and a quieter time to visit, both in terms of crowds, animal sighting and geo-thermal activity. However, you can go cross-country skiing or take snow coach tours.


Visitor Alert! For safety reasons, please consult with the park rangers when exploring trails. Do not approach or provoke wild animals. Stay a good distance away from bubbling or you may get scalded. Try not to bicycle or walk in the park area as wild animals are at large. Most regions in the park have clinics.


For pedestrians and bikers the entry fee is a nominal US$ 10 valid for 7 days. If you plan on bringing in your motorbike or snowmobile, it will cost you US$ 15 for week and if you are driving a private car then you will have to pay US$ 20. This is also valid for 7 days. An annual pass for US$ 40 is available too. This is valid for Yellowstone and the Grand Teton and can be used for one year from date of purchase. American citizens are eligible for lifetime passes, which allow entry to all the national parks in the country. These passes are free for those with permanent disabilities, and cost a nominal amount- between US$ 10 and 50- for everybody else.

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