Yellowstone National Park

Yellowstone National Park is located mainly in Wyoming but also invades parts of Montana and Idaho. Yellowstone was established in 1872 and is Americas first National Park. Known for it's geological features which include geysers, springs, and basins, the main reason photogs swarm the region is because of it's wildlife. It's the home of thousands of animals which include but not limited to, wolves, bear, bison, and elk. Although I didn't spot any, there are supposedly some moose in the area as well, but your best chance to spot a moose will come when visiting Grand Teton National Park which is just south in Wyoming.

There is an abundant amount of wildlife throughout the park. To spot a critter just look for the usual signs, a traffic jam, people running through the woods with a camera, bison acting as a toll gate, and park rangers yelling at people to stay with their vehicle. Kidding aside, the park rangers at Yellowstone are very busy keeping people safe. I know the excitement, and the adrenaline rush of seeing a grizzly, or a big bull elk for the first time, but we have to remember that we aren't at a zoo, these animals are wild. Stay with your vehicle or better yet inside your vehicle. I saw several people in the park not making the best decisions. Standing in the path of a moving grizzly trying to fill the frame with a point and shoot, in my book is considered a bad decision.

The park is big and it takes a couple hours to get from one end to the other with the park speed limit being 45 mph. I stayed at the lodge by Old Faithful. It was nice and somewhat rustic, but my next visit I will be staying in the northern part of the park for easier access to wildlife. I would recommend Mammoth Hot Springs area. Most of the wildlife is located in the north and north east areas of the park. I will cover my favorite spots in a later post.

Things aren't cheap, I'm sure you already knew that, but there are plenty accommodations. They even have a auto repair shop open during the summer months. Fall in Yellowstone is a great time to visit. The wildlife is in the rutting season and small crowds made this trip a joy. Yellowstone closes down in October early November so check the park website to see what's available  when you do your planning.

This weeks post picture was taken while driving from Grand Teton to Yellowstone. There where a group of about eight elk on the side of the road with the male elk bugling. If you haven't heard an elk bugle you should check it out. The photo was taken handheld with my 70-200 with a 1.4 extender attached at f8.

Yellowstone is a great park with lots of wildlife and many other things to see and do. Highly Recommended!