Saturday, July 14, 2012

'12/#31 4th of July Continued

Things have been a little crazy around here, but I will get back to that later. First I would like to finish up our own personal celebration of our nation's birth. After the parades, the craft fairs, the shopping, & the rodeo, all under the most beautiful blue Wyoming sky we called it a day. We had fun & were exhausted so it was early to bed for us. Tomorrow, the 4th, would be another day.

To celebrate the birth of our country we felt that spending the day in our country's first national park was appropriate. Having been to the park a number of times we wanted to make it special. So what better way than to do it on a motorcycle? The freedom of riding, the exposure to the open air, & the unobstructed views for photography promised another wonderful day. The plan was to get up by 7am & avoid the last parade of Cody's 4th of July celebration. So much for plans, but who cares? It's our day off & we were just going to enjoy it! So instead our day started at 9:30am.

We had a quick breakfast & hopped on the bike. We were treated to the scenic tour of Cody via detours due to the parade. What would have been a 5 minute ride took about 20 minutes but the weather was beautiful & we didn't care. Yellowstone here we come. It is 50 scenic miles to the park entrance & then another 25 breathtaking miles to the next visitor center at Fishing Bridge. There was also an increase in elevation of over 2000'. What was a beautiful 90 degree day in Cody turned into a beautiful 65 degree day in Yellowstone. The only problem was that in our rush to hit the road we didn't pack for the change in weather. A quick stop at the clearance rack in the gift shop, 2 sweat shirts later, & a fill up at the gas pump & we were on our way.

This trip to the park we wanted to see something we hadn't been to before, so we headed north with Roosevelt Lodge & Mammoth Hot Springs our destination. Traffic in the park had picked up quite a bit since our last visit. With tourist season in full swing & the holiday it was expected but it allowed everyone to slow down & take in the scenery. That's what everyone is here for anyway, right? Not as many animals as we have seen in the past but we still managed to get into a buffalo jam. It is a little different on a motorcycle. Inside a 9000 lb truck a 2000 lb buffalo is more awe inspiring than intimidating. On a 700lb motorcycle things change. There were no issues but the difference gives one something to think about.

Between our late start & the traffic it was early afternoon by the time we got to Roosevelt Lodge. The lodge is more rustic than some of the other hotels in the park & they feature activities like horseback riding & wagon rides. It is still awesome scenery in the area but with no thermal activity & less volcanic evidence around it is not as impressive as some other parts of the park. It was getting late & we were getting tired so it was time to head home. Mammoth will wait for another day.

By the time we got back to Fishing Bridge we were getting hungry & a little saddle weary so we stopped to fill the fuel tanks on us & the motorcycle, plus give a little rest to our posteriors. After 200 miles we needed to walk & stretch a bit. Every time I mentioned that we should get going Mary cringed not wanting to get back on the bike. We had another 2 hours to go to get back home & I did not want to be riding during dusk since that is when the deer start coming out. I don't want to have a deer vs truck incident but I really don't want to have a deer vs motorcycle incident. We all know who loses in that one. So on the bike & homeward bound.

Now I mentioned earlier that photography on a motorcycle is different than in a car or truck. With no roof, window, or door pillars the view is unobstructed. As anyone who has followed our travels knows, Mary is quite the shutter-bug. This day was no exception. Mary  had to switch batteries on her camera then she started with my camera & used 2 batteries & 2 memory cards. By the time we got home she had shot right around 1000 pictures. Yes, 1000, all in one day. That is a new record for her. I have to say she got a ton of awesome pictures as usual, & once we go through them all I am sure they will get posted in the blog & on FB.

Well that is all for today, so this is goodbye from our home in Wyoming because....

Home is where we park it,
Frank & Mary

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