Saturday, September 26, 2009

YELLOWSTONE NATIONAL PARK/PHOTOGRAPHIC SOCIETY OF AMERICA INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE

The Arnica Creek Fire in Yellowstone on Thursday taken across Lewis Lake








Various thermal features taken today in Yellowstone Park

Our week in West Yellowstone, Montana has come to the end. It’s been a very good week with beautiful blue skies all the time and while frosty in the morning, daytime temperatures have been in well into the 20’s C (70’s F). I really enjoyed my five days of day long tours to various parts of the National Park. In fact, on two of the days, I got way more than planned. Thursday’s ten hour trip was nearly twelve hours while Friday’s was 16.5 hours. I got home at 7:30 PM Thursday and left the trailer at 5:50 AM Friday. There had been a small forest fire west of Yellowstone Lake which really flared up on Thursday. On Friday we’d embarked on a 250 mile trip to Mammoth and were less than 40 miles from home when the road was closed because of the fire. We had to go all the way back to Mammoth then up to Livingstone where we got on I-90 west to Boseman, Montana where we turned south 90 miles to West Yellowstone. It was nearly 10:30 PM when we returned. The really unfortunate part of being so late was that four bus loads of us photographers missed seeing the feature presentation of the conference by Art Wolfe. Aileen did get to see it and reports that it was excellent. Oh well!

I think I managed to get some fairly good images on my tours. I see I have taken 2,063 images since arriving here September 19, 2009. Most nights I hardly had time to download my cards and recharge my batteries. I didn’t do so good recharging me as I had difficulty getting good sleep and most nights were pretty short. This has been the most tiring conference I have attended but it has also been the best for getting images. Many years Yellowstone is experiencing winter weather by now, not this great weather. Aileen and I took a little trip into the park today. We left Mitzy behind in the trailer since dogs aren’t allowed on the trails or boardwalks and it is too hot to leave her in the truck. We went as far as Old Faithful, which didn’t erupt for us although Castle Geyser did. I got some more great shots today and found some areas I hadn’t been to yet.

We plan to leave West Yellowstone tomorrow but other than heading west and south, I haven’t determined a route yet. Hopefully the weather won’t be too hot down lower as we make our way to our next planned stop in Grand Junction, Colorado to visit friends, Ken and Marie, from Caliente. Beyond there our plan is to explore some of the canyon country in the fours corners area.