day 142
yellowstone national park

"It's so cold out, even the thermometer is blue." -rich
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Rental Ruckuss:
Skis: $14.25/day
Snowshoes: $11/day
Snowmobile: $165/day
Snow Clothing: $21/day
Snowcoach Tour: $92 (1way)

Best Deal In Town: When Chris from the Ski Hut (you'll meet him later) saw our Nike sneakers he took pity on us and tossed in the gaiters that keep your legs warm and your shoes dry free of charge. Thanks Chris!

National Geographic Shot of the Day
Animal Antics:
We just totally lucked out when it came to wildlife viewing in Yellowstone. Yesterday we saw the elk locking horns, bunnies up close and bison from afar.

Today we watched from 100 feet away as two coyotes gnawed away at an elk carcass and then followed them as they went hunting again.

Luck struck twice today when we encountered a herd of bison approaching us on the road being followed by a ranger car. It was an eye-to-eye view of the intimidating creatures.

At one point, they made a sideways run towards Mel and we thought we were about to be gored. If that had happened, today's story would be entirely different.

The People of Yellowstone
Jan 15 - Isolation breeds familiarity, as the saying goes that we just made up. This must be why everyone we met at Yellowstone seemed so nice, and after only a few hours, we felt like we'd known them forever. We'll introduce you to a select few of the select few...

Chris: Ski Hut Operator
Chris is the man with the inside scoop on Yellowstone. He operates the local ski shop, outfitting skiers and snowshoers with the right equipment for their sport. With almost two hundred thousand visitors every winter to Yellowstone, that's a big job!

It's at Chris' shop that you can buy the Mini Mini Hand Warmer. These little babies are perfect for keeping your tootsies warm in the tent. Chris was also the guy to told us we could get a free you-know-what at the you-know-where. You da man, Chris!

Christine: Yellowstone Park Ranger
Christine has been a National Park Ranger for 11 years, thanks to one last University credit she needed to complete her Math/Psychology/Philosophy degree. She led us on our snowshoe walk through the dangerous forests of Yellowstone and regaled us with stories about the inner workings of the Department of the Interior.

Her favourite quote about winter:
"The dark is overhead with the white at my feet; I am walking upside down in the sky." - Annie Dillard.

Wendy & Rich: Vacationers
These crazy kids are here to celebrate Rich's 40th birthday. He didn't know where he was headed until last Tuesday night! Nice present!

We met them when we all signed up for the snowshoe walk. We met them better when we were told we needed a car to go to the snowshoe starting point, and they didn't have one. We all squished into Mel for the ride down, giving us a nice cozy icebreaker to make new friends.

Wendy and Rich were nice enough to invite us out for dinner that night, and we continued having a blast talking and laughing well into the night. We closed the restaurant. Then the bar. And we wound up at the only place left open in town - gathered around the hotel lobby fireplace. Even there, the janitor was giving us dirty looks.

Thanks for a great night, guys!

Email Rich and wish him a happy 40th!

Douglas, King of the Mice (& his Minions)
When Mother Nature created the fir tree, she was the finest tree in the forest. She was such a beautiful and unique tree that it took her 100 years to develop seeds to produce her children.

When the time came, she announced to everyone in the forest that she was going to release her cones the following morning. When Douglas, the King of the mice, heard about this, he told all the other mice to hide near the Fir. When she opened her cones the next morning, the mice planned to jump in and steal the seeds.

And that they did. King Douglas and the mice stole every last seed.

A year later, Fir was ready again. She announced to the forest that she was ready to release her cones. Again, the mice stole them all the following morning.

Another year passed, and this time, Fir was ready for the mice. She announced to the forest that she would release her seeds in the morning, and the mice hid nearby. When she opened her cones, the mice jumped inside to grab the seeds like the other years, but there were no seeds to be found. The fir had released them during the night!

Before the mice could run away, the fir closed the cones on Douglas and his company. This is why a Douglas Fir's cones look the way they do; the paws and tails of the mice trying to escape!

doing the dew...

Kev strikes a pose

Look Ma, no hands

Everyone's doing it

The right of way
more photos in the archive...

Current Location
(get out your push pins)

Yellowstone, WY

Next Stop: Craters of the Moooooon!

see the full map...

Today's Weather:

Daily Stats

Snoeshoe Slip-ups:
Aimee:Lost Shoe
Wendy:Lost Shoe
Kevin:Fell in River
Ranger:Fell in Bank
Rich:Not a Scratch

Sleeping Quarters
Mammoth Hot Springs

The following morning the Park Ranger came up to us and congratulated us on surviving the night. The temperature? Minus 8 Fahrenheit to you Yanks, or -22 Celsius to the Canucks. Either way you say it, that's frickin' frackin' cold. We were quite proud of ourselves.

Yellowstone Park
K's Order:Maple Brown Sugar Oatmeal
A's Order:Peaches & Cream Oatmeal
Wolf Valley
Yellowstone Park
Shared:Nachos & Salsa

Dining Room
Mammoth Hot Springs
Kevin:Spinach Penne with Pinenuts, Vegetable Soup, Irish Coffee
Aimee:Brie Chicken, House Salad, Buttered Rum
Rich:Salmon Dinner, House Salad, Headstong Beer
Wendy:Salmon Dinner, House Salad, Pina Colada
Cost:Rich's Treat!

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© 2002. Kevin Beimers and Aimee Lingman. Where's Yogi?