Montana to California – Part 1

{ Friday May 26th, 2000 }

Kristofer Yahner on bike leaving for my trip outside of Yellowstone gateFinally I have departed. With only a few minor difficulties (I forgot to bring my favorite green socks) I was able to leave West Yellowstone this morning.The rain did not defeat my good spirits, but I was a little perturbed when the sun came out and I started baking in my rain gear.

The problem was easily solved by removing the rain gear . . . until it started raining again. This continued most of the day. The traffic was relatively light but despite their small numbers the travelers of Yellowstone Park did not disappoint me. Elk on the roadThey braked wildly every time they saw something move on the side of the road creating traffic jams every couple of miles. I did meet some very nice people today. Meeting people and talking about the trip was nice in the morning when I was fresh but as I got more tired so did the conversation. But let me get to the real catastrophe of the day. I arrived at Old Faithful (30 miles from W. Yellowstone) at about noon. The plan was to rest for a while and have lunch with my folks and then continue to Grant Village, 20 miles away to camp for the night. While I was wandering around the hotels and shops that ring the infamous geysers I saw a sign that listed the campgrounds and their state of openness.

I suppose you can guess that the Grant campground was closed. I went inside and a Grizzly Adams look-a-like confirmed that this was indeed true. The next open campsite was 41 miles away, unless I wanted to go back 16 miles to a campsite I had passed earlier.Kristofer Yahner at the Yellowstone entrace sign

Neither of these options seemed appealing so I got a hotel rooms at the Snow Lodge, a hotel next to Old Faithful. . . One of the last hotel rooms available . . . for $132.50. . . and it doesn’t even have a TV . . . but it does have a screaming kid in the next room . . . and a shower that choose its temperature randomly.
Overloaded Bike
Old Faithful


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