(Ken) May 31, 2013. For our travels on the second day in Yellowstone National Park, we decided to head northeast on the loop road rather than cover ground we already did.
Our goal for the day was to enter the Grand Canyon of Yellowstone and see the upper and lower falls of the Yellowstone River. It was a farther drive than to Old Faithful, so we decided not to stop at every turnout on the way!
We managed to cover the 40 or so miles in a little over an hour by not stopping as much. We figured we had to go back from whence we came, so we could stop on our way back and spend more time in the canyon.
We did make a stop at the Mud Volcano, Dragons Mouth and Sulfur Caldron which are all in one basic location. The walk between the two locations was short so the cold wind didn’t have time to cut to the bone.
It was a good choice, because the weather was not as forgiving as it was the day before and the forecast wasn’t too promising (snow), gave us plenty of time to see what we wanted to see the most – the Grand Canyon!
Arriving at the upper falls first, we watched in awe as the Yellowstone River entered the canyon by firstly taking a 109 foot free fall before roaring through the narrow canyon passage. Simply amazing!
Since the lower falls were only a quarter of a mile down stream, we decided to make the hike along the canyon rim. However, the quarter mile was measured ‘as the crow flies’ and I think we all know a river does not flow as a crow flies..
The rim trail provided excellent views of the canyon, but made the quarter mile hike much longer. I think it took us about an hour to hike to the lower falls access trail and staircase – yes, staircase.
End of Part 1………….Until Next Time……………..Cheers.