Things To Know And See Your First Time At Yellowstone
The park is a very popular tourist destination and can get very busy, especially during the spring and fall months. During these times, it is very important to take your time and enjoy the scenery. If you’re planning your first time at Yellowstone, there are a few things you should know. These tips will ensure your trip is both safe and fun.
The Grand Prismatic Spring
The Grand Prismatic Spring is the most famous hot spring in Yellowstone, and it’s one of the park’s most popular attractions. At 370 feet in diameter, it’s bigger than a football field and the third-largest spring on Earth. The water is incredibly hot (it’s up to 189 degrees Fahrenheit) and bubbles up in a circle around the center of the spring. The ring of hot water gradually cools as it spreads out across the spring’s massive surface, creating bands of distinct temperatures around each side. These colors are the result of billions of microbes and minerals in the water, as well as sunlight being scattered by mineral particles. The bacteria thrive in the warmer waters and create a rainbow of vibrant colors, with dazzling bright yellows, fierce oranges and deep reds only appearing near the edges of the spring. You can see this incredible rainbow from the boardwalk in the Midway Geyser Basin, but it’s worth a short hike up to the overlook for an even better view. The trail starts at Fairy Falls and climbs 105 feet above Midway Lake.
If you’re visiting Yellowstone for the first time, then Old Faithful is likely at the top of your to-do list. But, with so many visitors coming to see the world-famous geyser every year, getting the best view can be tough. However, there are a few things you can do to ensure you have a memorable eruption viewing experience. As a rule, it’s best to visit in the shoulder seasons (September or October) when crowds are less likely. Also, avoid times between noon and 6 p.m. when bus tours and visitors are expected to arrive, if you’d like a more intimate experience with the erupting geyser all to yourself. Another thing that’s often overlooked when visiting Yellowstone is the wildlife that lives around and on top of the geyser. Thousands of animals (including bison, elk, mule deer, pronghorn antelope and even birds) call Yellowstone home.
There are a lot of things to know and see when visiting Yellowstone for the first time. It’s important to understand the basics and plan ahead to make the most of your trip! One of the most popular activities at Yellowstone is exploring the 136-square-mile Yellowstone Lake. It’s the largest high-elevation lake in North America and is home to many thermal features. It’s also a great place to get out of the crowds and view more wildlife. There are a variety of options for boat tours, fishing, and kayaking on the lake. It’s also important to remember that Yellowstone is constantly changing. This means that you won’t be seeing the same thermal features you saw last year!
The Mammoth Hot Springs
Mammoth Hot Springs, one of Yellowstone’s most stunning attractions, is a geothermal site known for its travertine terraces. They are unlike any other thermal feature in the park. These unique formations are a result of a geothermal system that is connected to an ancient volcano. The Mammoth Hot Springs are made up of limestone, a type of rock that is more soft than other types of rock. The water that comes out of the Mammoth Hot Springs is heated by a partially molten magma chamber deep underground, which radiates heat to the earth’s surface. A few springs in the Mammoth Hot Springs area are active. The Liberty Cap, a 37-foot-high cone that’s unique to the Mammoth Hot Springs, is a spectacular sight. And if you are going to visit Mammoth Hot Springs, make sure you stop by the Lower Terrace boardwalk. This trail connects a number of the most spectacular Mammoth Hot Springs, including New Highland Terrace, Prospect Terrace, Orange Spring Mound, Snow Pond, Bath Lake, White Elephant Back Terrace and Angel Terrace.