Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Day 4: We arrive at Yellowstone

This day was rough, y’all. It was our third big driving day, and was supposed to be our second day in a row of 5 hours on the road. Somehow, through miscalculation of mileage or decreased speed limit, or SOMETHING, it turned into around 10 hours on the road. We tried stopping frequently to stretch. Cate watched movie after movie after movie. We ate candy. We were pulling out all the stops, but nothing changed the fact that we were ready to be out of the car. Wyoming is gorgeous in spurts, but there was a big long stretch of road that looked just like the dirt-filled/flat/brushy land that is familiar at home.

We did find an amazing and completely unexpected stop at Boysen State Park. Here, the mountains rise around the road, and you drive literally through them in tunnels piercing the rock.

Fate would have it that there was even a playground and picnic area. We stopped for lunch and took a few pictures. We couldn’t deny the beauty of the place, but still we were not completely bolstered. The bugs were bad, it was 95 degrees, and Cate was having none of it. We had woken her from her nap to stop.

When we reached Cody,WY, the last city before entering Yellowstone from the east, storm clouds had rolled in and raindrops were hitting the windshield. I swear, we each checked the weather at least ten times before leaving and never saw rain in the forecast. We stopped to buy rain jackets. We strategized how to most efficiently put the tent up in the rain. We discussed alternate plans in case it was pouring when we got there.

It rained on us all the way through our first drive through the park. Our views were mostly of forest and Yellowstone Lake, beautiful. When we reached our campsite at Bridge Bay, the rain had slowed to hardly a sprinkle. Some friendly Canadians at the site right next to us informed us we had just missed the downpour. We had just enough time to put the tent up before dark. So thankful.

We cooked out on our camping stove, and finally got to roast the marshmallows Cate had been asking for. We’re here, friends! Hooray!


Cody said...

Not quite interesting fact on Cody, WY: it's right by Powell, WY. So, whenever I meet someone from Wyoming, they guffaw at my name like I would if I met Dallas Ft. Worth.

Grandi said...

Wow, a really challenging leg of the journey! Sounds like ya'll are still have safe/good travel considering. Driving through the mountains sounds beautiful. Cate is a real trooper that long! Have a really good time there!

Emileigh said...

I'm so sorry for all of the hiccups in your journey. That makes it no fun. But the end sounded wonderful! Roasting marshmallows!