Trip report - sixth day - part 1

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    Posted by Andie ( on July 08, 2005 at 00:23:08:

    We have cereal and coffee in our cabin, pack the car, and hit the road. The sky is partly cloudy and the air actually feels relatively warm, so we are hoping for fair weather today. It is 47 degrees F and there is no wind. We stop at Kepler Cascades, one of the places we have not visited in a number of years. I am always surprised at how impressive both the cascades and the canyon are.
    As we drive over Craig Pass, we see lots of snow and someone has even built a snowman with little stick arms. At West Thumb, there are several elk grazing very near the entrance to the parking lot. As we park to tour the basin, someone honks at the elk, which have evidently wandered into the road. We look at each other and shake our heads in disgust.
    As we head north towards Lake, we are hoping to spot a grizz with two cubs that we have heard is in the area, but have no luck. We decide to forgo Mud Volcano, but we do stop to take pictures of Sulpher Cauldron. There are the usual bison in Hayden Valley and we have our picnic lunch parked on an overlook.
    After lunch we drive on towards Canyon. It has started to drizzle. We stop to take pictures at Artist Point, but it is raining harder and we head to the Village to check out eateries for supper later. After noting menus and serving times, we stop at the lodge office and, amazingly, are able to check into our cabin. As we unload the van, we note the people next door have two coolers of food and some sort of grill on the porch.
    We drive along the north rim, stopping at the overlooks. By now the rain has stopped and the sky is clearing, so we decide to hike the Red Rock trail. We have not done this in at least 15 years the last time we carried at least one of the boys in a baby pack. I had forgotten what a magnificent view of the Lower Falls this is. The walk out is longer and harder than I remember it. It starts to rain again, so after a stop for a look at the Upper Falls, we head back to the cabin. The people next door are gone, but the coolers full of food are still on the deck. I wonder if they plan to leave them there all night.
    After a very early supper in the cafeteria, we stop at the trailer that is the temporary visitor center to check out the forecast for the next day and get information about the east entrance road closing. As we drive toward Hayden Valley, we debate the best route to take out of the park and home tomorrow. The bison are crossing the road, one at a time, at Alum Creek. We thought to park and watch these great shaggy beasts for awhile, but tourists are behaving foolishly. After watching an elderly man, probably in his late 70s, and his wife, walk to within 5 feet of several bison to take pictures, we decide to leave. I am in no mood to see someone gored this evening.

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