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July 4, 2010 / Amy Lucas Photography

Bozeman, MT – Pinedale, WY

Today’s highlights: Yellowstone National Park, Grand Teton National Park, Fireworks

Change in plans. We were originally going to head East on interstate 90 to 78 South to 212 West which turns into the Beartooth highway, but we got a late start and had to get through Yellowstone National Park, so we decided to cut Beartooth out of our plans. Instead we got on 90 East and took 89 South through Yellowstone. Yellowstone was pretty awesome. There were so many neat things to see. We saw, hot springs, geysers, and wild bison. We spent a long time getting through Yellowstone. We didn’t end up leaving the park until 8 P.M. and we still had over 200 miles to go before we got to our hotel. We stayed on 89 South (which is also 191 South) and that took us through Grand Teton National Park. It was pretty late, so the sun was setting behind the mountains. At one point the sky was a bright orange/yellow but I wasn’t able to get a great picture because trees kept being in the way. After we left the Tetons, it was getting really dark. We couldn’t see anything other than what our headlight lit up. The land around us was pitch black, and so was the sky (other than the stars, which were very bright). It was so strange. We had to be careful while driving because there were deer all over the place. At one point we saw fireworks going off in the distance. I’m not sure how far away they were. Since the land is so open and flat out here, you can see forever. So not only did we see fireworks going off on the right of us in the distance, we also saw another set going off in front of us. It was nuts. We could see both perfectly, but they were far away from each other. We eventually pulled into Jackson where the fireworks (in front of us) were still going off, and we got to watch the finale just as we were driving through. After we got through Jackson, we still had another 76 miles left before we got to our hotel. This is when the ride got unbearable. The temperate dropped down to 36 degrees. Riding on a motorcycle for an hour and a half in freezing temperatures is awful. I was shivering uncontrollably, and couldn’t feel my body. I have a much greater appreciation for death valley now. 112 degrees was uncomfortably hot, but at least my entire body wasn’t in pain. We finally made it to our hotel at midnight. I took a really hot shower to try to thaw myself out, but I’m still pretty cold now. I can’t wait to curl up under the warm covers and fall asleep.

Today’s wildlife: Bald Eagle, Deer, Bison

Yellowstone National Park

Mammoth Hot Springs

Mammoth Hot Springs

Mammoth Hot Springs

Mammoth Hot Springs

Bison

Midway Geyser Basin

Bacterial Mats at the Midway Geyser Basin

Bacteria Mats at the Midway Geyser Basin

Midway Geyser Basin

Bacteria Mats at the Midway Geyser Basin

Midway Geyser Basin

Bacteria Mats at the Midway Geyser Basin

Bacteria Mats at the Midway Geyser Basin

Steaming water flowing from the Midway Geyser Basin into the river

Old Faithful

Leaving Yellowstone National Park

North end of the Grand Tetons at dusk

Sunset

Grand Tetons at dusk

Today’s Mileage: 311.7
Total Mileage Traveled: 4,243

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