Final Day in Yellowstone, Day 10

June 649915_DaisyWaldOur last full day in the park today. Mary is feeling better each day, so we took advantage of a dry morning and set out again for some final walks around some of the geyser basins. This whole area is pretty flat so the walking should be easy. The only problem might be rain later, but hey, we like that. Mary concocted a loop hike that will take us from Biscuit Basin through some of the less visited features between here and Old Faithful, and then back. First though was Biscuit Basin. It was so crowded when we’ve passed before, that we didn’t stop. This early, there were many fewer people.49921_DaisyWaldThis area has some of the more colorful hot pools and geysers. I look for things to silhouette against the steamy glacier colored hot pools. Other areas were absolutely boast brilliantly colored mineral lined terraces.49917_DaisyWald 49925_DaisyWald 49926_DaisyWaldAll along the boardwalk are of pools are liquid rainbows and geysers of various intensities.49942_DaisyWald 49939_DaisyWald 49958_DaisySapphire 49928_DaisyWald 49949_DaisyWaldAs we walked over the bridge above the Firehole River on the way out of the basin, we paused awhile to watch fly fishermen casting about.49975_fishing49980_DaisyWalkWe moved on to Black Sand Basin and seemed to arrive between busses. Just a few cars here. This area hasn’t changed much since previous visits. Visibility was much better than previous visits because these nice spring days are warmer so far less steam present to obscure views. We got some nice views of Emerald Pool, Sunset Lake, and Opalescent Pool.49987_DaisyWalk 49996_DaisyWalk 50002_DaisyWalk 50020_DaisyWalk 50011_DaisyWalk 50026_DaisyWalk 50038_DaisyWalk 50043_BlackSandPoolWe found the Daisy Trailhead – a hiking trail that leaves from Black Sand Basin and will take us to a few other pools and geysers over in the Upper Geyser Basin near Old Faithful. The trail first crosses the highway and goes into a scrubby pine area. The trail first passes Black Sand Pool. It’s another big hot pool. So what, we’re getting pretty jaded I guess. We paused here awhile, just because. A a particularly quiet, calm moment, I felt a mild thump underground. That was a little weird. 20 seconds later, the pool started bubbling and steaming much more. Then calmed down again. It happened repeatedly over the next few minutes. Just made me think about the forces deep underground. This place is supposed to explode again someday.50054_PunchbowlFurther on were Punch Bowl Spring and Grotto Geyser.50062_DaisyWalk 50067_DaisyWalkBeyond that, a favorite, Morning Glory Pool. A plaque there chastises those who would throw money or rocks into the pool. So of course a close inspection reveals money on the edges of the pool. This pool (and probably others) must be closed and cleaned out every year from people doing this.50088_DaisyWalk 50096_DaisyWalkBack tracking a bit, we moved into the Upper Geyser Basin. We didn’t do this part of the walk the last time here, so we figured we’d get it in now. We seemed to have missed most of the geyser eruptions around here. Many are quite regular in a 2-3 hour window. We just hope we blindly stumble upon one.50101_DaisyWalkFrom quite a distance, we could see Grand Geyer going off. We didn’t hurry because we though it would be finished momentarily. But it just kept going and going. It had turned to mostly steam by the time we got over, but still it made for some nice scenes.50103_DaisyWalk 50111_DaisyWalk 50121_DaisyWalkMost of the rest of the walk was backtracking. It was getting very overcast again by the time we got close to the trailhead, but no rain. We paused awhile along the Firehole River again to photograph flowers. I think we both don’t want to go, but we’ve run out of time. I’m glad this trip has finished so well. Back at camp we sat outside and enjoyed the warm air. Later, we took a final stroll down to the meadow that borders the campground – a final search for bison.50125_DaisyWalkWe are back in San Francisco now, busy catching up on homelife. We had a pretty uneventful sprint home right into a heat wave. Well, everywhere but San Francisco. We drove up to a lovely wall of fog cascading over our neighborhood.

Some changes hopefully in store for our summer. Stay tuned…

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