Google didn't tell me about the mountain pass
June 30, 2013 | I had to, had to see Old Faithful erupt this morning, followed by a pass through Grand Teton NP, followed by a swing back up into Idaho to visit the Craters of the moon.
But my goodness there was a steep pass to go up and go down in between. Poor Sophie.
There is an epidemic across the west in the form of digital "Your Speed" signs atop posted speed signs. And usually the posted speed limit is some ridiculously low speed. C'mon, who drives 15 mph? The pestilence is especially wide-spread in states like Utah, Colorado, and Wyoming where they like to change the speed limit every 2 miles. Although I determined that I would generally obey the speed limits on this trip, these "Your Speed" signs have been especially irksome. Like anybody's going to slam on the brakes to immediately slow their vehicle from 75 to 35!
It was in the 50s this morning in Yellowstone, so the steam from all the geysers was very visible as I drove along the road from Madison Junction to Old Faithful. Old Faithful herself went off as I was driving and I could see the plume of steam from the distance. To my surprise, there were hardly any people at the geyser (of course I was there at 8:30).
The drive through Grand Teton was awesome. In constrast to the rest of the Rockies, these mountains are fresh and sharp — in fact they are still being lifted up, growing taller. And they are just stone; no trees or plants have taken root yet. And, with Lake Jackson at their feet, it was an awesome sight.
After climbing a fiercely steep pass into Idaho, and back down again on the other side, I crossed the Snake River several times, passing through mountain forests, farmland, and finally after leaving Idaho Falls, a gigantic lava field. It reminded me a lot of the Big Island. What's different is that this area houses the Idaho National Laboratory, the latest name for numerous facilities that have tested nuclear energy. If I glow in the dark after this trip, you'll know why.
I am lodged tonight in a little motel that can only be described as "quaint." It is old, but lovingly maintained and the room has character. And, it is half the price of the horrible Bunkhouse in Medora, North Dakota.
Last updated on May 12, 2016