On to Yellowstone - we left Midvale at 7am after packing the car to the top the night before. It was funny that in packing things up to go camping, I was the boy scout and Brian was well me on a normal day. I am the one who gets rid of everything and is constantly downsizing our stuff; Brian likes to save and would be a packrat if he hadn't married me. But for camping I was the one who wants to "Be Prepared" and Brian wanted to take as little as possible to just get by. I won except for of course in the rain gear department which I knew was a bad thing going into it.
So we drove to where we met up with the Dynes' in Idaho, I think we officially met up in Rexburg. The girls did great on the drive which was surprising. Naomi tends to get carsick and Gwen usually cries the entire time after 1 hour in the car. But they were pleasant! Even Brian and I did great. We got into Yellowstone and realized we still had a TON of driving to get to the campsite. This is when the girls started to whine, but Brian and i were still excited so it didn't matter. We slowed to stop and go traffic which lined up as far as we could see. In the end that turned out to be our favorite part because we saw this:
There were tons of mommies and baby buffalo, and they were crossing the street which was what was holding everyone up.
We also stopped to see some of the Hot Springs, but I did not get any pictures of those. Its such an interesting phenomenon! It was fun as we drove around through the park to see stream just rising off to the sides in what seemed to be completely random places!
We got to our camp and set up with a slight drizzle, but it stopped for us to enjoy our dinners and some smores. Carlee provided for us some wonderful tin foil meals with fresh, not canned beets and we LOVED them! Brian even ordered a salad with beets on it last week and enjoyed them again. We went to bed early to get the girls down, but it was not an easy task. By this time it was raining pretty steadily. I don't know if it was a full on pour yet, but it was steady. It was slowly getting colder. I made sure everyone was tucked in with multiple blankets on them. Gwen just screamed and screamed for a bit because she never goes to sleep with other people around. She is always in her crib. At this point we had noticed our tent was leaking what we were hoping was a little bit. I sat up and rocked Gwen while singing to her finishing up with some ABBA which was all I could think of at the time! She kept touching her eye saying "eye" over and over. That is when I noticed she had a drop that kept dropping directly into her eyeball! I covered her with a blanket and she was asleep in no time.
At about this time we noticed our tent was not just leaking but pouring in water from the seams mostly, but there were some drips directly from the top. Brian was asleep right after Gwen went down. I think I dosed off a few times before Naomi, but she kept asking me questions about noises she heard outside. She was just all around too excited at the adventure to sleep. I didn't feel that cold through the night, but Carlee posted on her blog that it got down to 37 degrees F. It was cold in the morning, but I think that was mostly because we were all a little damp.
We went early to see Old Faithful which was a great time to go! It was better than I thought it would be. That thing blows forever! We did not get pictures of Old Faithful either.
Then we headed to the North around Yellowstone Lake to The Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone. The "prairie" area above Yellowstone Lake was gorgeous. And we saw more buffalo!
Brian's favorite part, of course, was the waterfalls!
But we also did not get any pictures of the Grand Canyon waterfalls. Very odd of us to not have our camera ready!
We had a nice picnic as we watched the dark clouds crawl back towards us. Brian and I had decided earlier that we wouldn't risk another night in the tent. So we went back to pack up our soaked tent and gear.
I felt bad for the girls at this point because there had been lots of driving and we were setting out for MORE driving.
This was our view on the way out of Yellowstone. It had SNOWED! Crazy!
Brian's brother-in-law Morgan, visiting from South Africa, was staying in Ashton Idaho in a little cabin so he invited us to stay the night with him. That worked out perfectly! The cabin was adorable and truly in the middle of nowhere! We got quite a decent, yet distant, view of the Tetons while we headed out to the cabin. It was still raining where we were in Idaho, but it had stopped raining at Yellowstone, go figure!
Morgan took us out after the rain where we got to see a mama fox walk within 30 feet of us. He said the mom and babies play in a little stream down there. We thought there were a lot of mosquitos in Yellowstone, but they did not compare to the rabid mosquitos in Ashton!! They were nasty!
The next morning we drove back into Yellowstone from the south side that is not an official entrance to check out some more waterfalls. We were able to walk right down to the base of the Cave Falls. We sat and enjoyed the rushing water for a bit and watched a tiny baby fawn with her mama. They were on a little island, and Morgan was sure that the fawn had just been born maybe a week ago.
We hung out a little more with Morgan; Brian helped him put up a zip line for his family to play on since they were having a reunion there the next day. The girls liked it too! We drove home at this point. The drive home is always the longest part!
It was really fun, and we are hoping to head back to Yellowstone sometime to hit up the northern circle of the park!