Sunday, August 31, 2008

Random Thoughts and Photos from Yellowstone

A smart thinking girlfriend of mine always takes these fun photos of her kids jumping.  Mine thought it looked like fun, too.

I really need to invest in a new lens with a little more zoom! There really is a wolf somewhere in this picture.

Charlotte performed many, many shows for our entertainment.

Good bye to Yellowstone.  Thanks for so many memories.

Thursday, August 28, 2008

A Perfect 10!

Happy 10th birthday, Isabel!  We love you!

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Old Faithful, Crested Pool, a bear, and more

Is there any one out there who can resist the tourist trap called Old Faithful?  We certainly could not pass it up.  
Waiting, waiting, waiting...
and there ...

Poor Grace had to stay strapped into the jogger for our 4 mile walk around the geysers and pools.  She loves to run, jump, and climb but in this part of Yellowstone she sat and watched and cried!

Crested Pool caused quite a scene with all of the little ones in our group.  The older girls read a sign that stated Yellowstone National Park had added more safety features after a boy fell into this pool and sadly died from his injures.  (Hence the jogger stroller in the above picture)  The caution worked its wonders on all of the kiddos.  Everyone stayed on the path!

Charlotte now too scared to even look at a geyser or pool thanks to the above mentioned sign.

For me the one memory I will never forget is this grizzly bear.  I had never seen a grizzly in the wild until this one.  This "little" guy found himself some delicious road kill and then dragged it down a hill to chow down.  Yuck!  

He performed beautifully for all of us and the other 100 tourists that had stopped by to click a photo.  We watched as he ate, rolled around on his dinner (again, yuck), took a walk, and finally a swim.

The day we were leaving the park we came around a corner to find a bunch of forest rangers with their pepper spray out.  Turns out this bear had found himself another yummy meal (road kill again) along the same road.  Thanks to some lucky tourists this bear will not go hungry this winter!

Friday, August 15, 2008

The Tetons and the Blairs


Six days into our two week vacation our fabulous friends the Blairs joined us in Wyoming.  The Grand Teton National Park was our first stop.  We camped one night in Gros Venture Campground.  Unfortunately, our plans to ride the boat across Jenny Lake quickly dissolved when we couldn't find a place to park close to the lake.  We improvised with a hike by Jackson Lake but it was not the same (according to some young people in our group).   After one night and not enough time we headed off to Yellowstone.   

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Could we look any more like tourists?

  After leaving beautiful Zion we drove up to Park City for two more nights in the trailer.  I had to laugh at our new accommodations.  The sign out front said "RV Resort".  When I think of the word resort I tend to think of sparkling swimming pools, tennis courts, and a spa.  I wish they would just call it what it really is.  Trailer Park!

Trailer Park and all, we could not have asked for a better full day in Park City.  The girls loved the alpine slide and coaster.  We stopped by the Olympic Village to see where "J" broke her leg doing some crazy jumps into a swimming pool.  We also caught a glimpse of some ski jumpers practicing.  Isabel took a bunch of pictures of them.  Crazy stuff!  It is so much scarier in real life than on tv.  Look close or click on them to get a better view.  

Monday, August 11, 2008

The Lewis and Clark Expedition

Well, not quite Lewis and Clark.  Probably more like Clark Griswold from Vacation.  A little over three weeks ago we pulled out of our driveway, not in a covered wagon (even though it felt like that a few times) but with our trusty suburban and travel trailer in tow.  

After a night in Flagstaff, we headed off to Zion National Park.  (take a look from the previous post to see some pics from our adventures)  We were able to take two breathtaking hikes, a dip in the river running right by our camp, and enjoy all of the spectacular cliffs and canyons Zion had to offer.

Here are also a few lessons we learned along the way in Zion.  
  • Never take a tired three year old on a hike in the early evening and then expect her to ride the shuttle quietly back to camp.
  • Expect to get angry looks from other shuttle riders when tired three year old screams for  the 35 minute ride back.
  • Never let your four year old take a favorite blanket on shuttle ride.  Even when she says she won't lose it.  
  • Do try to convince your distraught four year old that a squirrel can use her missing blanket to keep warm next winter.  
  • Zion's camp ground is covered with very large ants.  
  • Do watch out for flash floods.  Especially when you are camping right next to the river.
  • Don't let anyone tell you Zion is cool in July.  
  • Love every minute with your four kids and fabulous husband, even when you are both asking yourselves, "What have we gotten ourselves into?"

Zion National Park