Le Journal de Bord
Day 1 04/08/2019 Arriving at Jackson Hole airport
We all landed off in Jackson Hole Airport where there were an arc made by moose antlers.
Some of us were delayed because of the thunderstorm which caused a fire on the third butte of East Gros Ventre Hills above the National Museum of Wildlife Art.
Discovering of the camping site with Sandrine, noodle diner and dodo time early !
Day 2 05/08/2019 Grand Teton National Park’s discovery
We walked around the” Gros Ventre “campground next to a river.
After only 5 minutes of walking, we saw a female moose.
She ate sage bush then she moved towards us on the other side of the river. We continued to a pebble beach where we got to know each other while the bald eagle was watching us.
We left the camp to the Grand Teton National Park. Originally, we were supposed to discover the Phelps Lake, but we lost ourselves. It didn’t matter because we could observe a European antilop and different rocks such as sandstone, gabbro, andesite and a paragneiss aged of 2,7 million years. We continued the road to the Jenny Lake where we ate sandwiches on the south beach with a wonderful panorama.
To finish the day, we went to some stores in Jackson Hole to find bison steak, burger bread, salad and a poly tarp in the goal to eat burgers and celebrate the 10 years anniversary of the creation of the Yellowstone trip in a shelter against the rain even though it was actually Sunny !
Day 3 06/08/2019 On the road to Yellowstone National Park !
After we demounted the camp, we went northward along old fluviatile terraces of the Snake River. We stopped at Lewis Falls ; that is wonderful with black shinning obsidian rock ! We had lunch in the Jackson Lake Lodge where the view on the lake.
Consequently, we entered the Yellowstone National park. We had a hard time finding an adequate location in the Grant Village camp but eventually we found a good spot (J325) without too many cars passing by. We set up the tents, Alizee used Jules as her personal carrier to attach the “bache”. Then we tried to find the Duck lake because the camp’s receptionist said that we couldn’t bathe ourselves in the Yellowstone lake. On the way to the lake we saw two mud pots. We finished the day with a bath in the very cold Duck lake.
Day 4 07/08/2019 Walk around the Yellowstone Lake
We spent time in the West Thumb Geyser Basin which has mud pots and hot springs. The bacterias surrounding the hot springs indicated the heat of the water around them (yellow, orange, brown, red and black) but also the pH level. We went back in the car and directed ourselves towards the Yellowstone Lake. On the way we saw a grizzly bear that was close to the road. It was really breath taking and exciting.
Then we went to the Yellowstone lake to have lunch and walk around it, we found a lot of obsidian rocks on the beach which we brought back to the visitor center to show them to the park rangers, they were very interested by us finding these rocks because they are very rare. Then we went to the general store and bought some souvenirs. We went to a visitor center and learnt a lot about the animals of Yellowstone.
Dinner time and… really nice conference from a ranger about wolves in Yellowstone. Really brave animals that can usually live 6 years but can easily reach 12 years in the park. They are a very important species in a ecosystem, maintaining the balance between the plants (eaten by elks), elks, beavers, coyotes etc. Fascinating animals. Way back in the dark to the tents, some youngs are a little scary by night, but I won’t tell who !
Day 5 08/08/2019 : cleaning ourselfs and big mammals watching
Cleaning morning : hot showers and laundry !
That’s THE day of big mammals watching : we saw many bisons very closed (enough to be a little scary), crossing the road for example. We saw a bear attacking a bison. The latter walked to the bear and crossed a river to see the carcass of a female bison that the grizzly killed the day before. Nice behavior to observe !
We saw beautiful landscapes with herd of bisons, we saw a lot of birds : geese, many species of ducks, pelicans, American robin etc.
On the way back we stopped at the mud volcano tour : many hot springs, mud pots, fumaroles, and geysers with different stories and names. A ranger explain us about the dynamic of a certain mud pots and we learnt that bisons often come to get rid of insects and smell sulfur.
Back the our camp site, we started cooking under the “bache” because of a big rain aound.
9:30 : time to go to bed kids !
Day 6 09/08/2019 : Norris camp and back to the city
Packing tents and everything to be at Norris Camp as soon as possible. First arrive first serve so we need to be there early.
We arrived around 9:30pm and got a camping site near by the river around 10 ! That’s a good job ! Installing the tents, the “bache” (we still don’t know how to say that in proper English, and lunch time arrives ! Then we drove to West Yellowstone, on the west part of Yellowstone (no really ?). It is a little city outside the park where we went shopping (especially for food) and got some networks. We could phone our lovely parents. We love you be the way.
Time to go back to Yellowstone, and maybe got for nice food in a restaurant before it ? Lets see…
No network for the next 5days. But no news, good news.
Big kiss from the team.
Matteo alias Teddy Minus Brutus, Alizee alias caldera little cat, Charles alias Boris the Russian, Emma alias the Baronne labelo Mayo from Versailles, Jules alias DJ roger with getting long hairs, Sandrine alias Wall-E the mummy, and Elodie alias Stacy the Joker. What a team !
Day 7 10/08/2019
This was one of the coldest days.
We saw one of the most famous hot springs in Yellowstone park : The Grand Prismatic. We went for a hike to see it from above. It was dazzling, this hot spring looks like a rainbow painted on the ground. All the colors were visible. After this great experience we went to the Fairy Falls, located 1.6 miles away (2.3 km). It was a long hike, but it was worth it. The rocks surrounding the waterfall were obsidian.
After the Fairy Falls, we all wanted to take a bath, so we went to the Fire Hole river to cool ourselves. And we weren’t disappointed : the water was a “bit” cold. Only Charles didn’t have problem to get in. Then we were very tired, so we went back to the camp for a good night.
Day 8 11/08/2019
This morning we went to the Norris geyser basin, famous for his milky looking water. But don’t get attracted by those colors, this mean the water is very (very) acid. We have been able (to try) to identify all the bacteria who live in those waters and give the water these colors. We also saw the highest geyser in the world “The steamboat”. But at this time, we were more impressed by the tiny but energetic geyser. He made us wait for a long time.
In the afternoon, we went to “old faithful”. We worked in group on our project. And as we worked hard, we have been allowed to have an ice cream ! 😊
We went to the black sand basin (obsidian rock around) and lay down for a while. We could hear the ground roaring and moving. The earth is living ! Scientific explanation : when a bubble of gaze ….
Diner time and bedtime.
Day 9 12/08/2019
Mammoth hot springs hike (see the beautiful pictures we took !).
Lunch and politic discussion (crisis in Island etc.).
Visitor center and nice showers. It feels good to be clean !
Dinner time and night walk to the Norris Geyser. But wait a minute, what is this strong noise, and this smoke ?????
That’s was an amazing moment : we were the first the see steamboat eruption. This year its mean eruption period was a week and it did not erupt since 12days.
At 10:23, it started, just for us. The volunteers and other visitors joined us, and we could answer their questions about steamboat geysers. More than 100m high, it was actually raining on us, so we left 1hours after the beginning and wet, cold and happy we went back to our camping site.
Day 10 13/08/2019
Wake up early, packing stuff because we have a big mission : finding a place to sleep.
Quick look at the steamboat again : it is still erupting !!! WHAAAAT ??? Since more than 10hours !
Driving to the North, we found one last place at the little Tower Roosevelt campground. Yeah !! Mission accomplished
On the way to Lamar Valley we saw many bison (and pretty close actually, don’t be jealous), beautiful landscapes, a coyote, European Antilope…)
We stopped to watch mountain Goat on a cliff with binoculars (crazy animals by the way)
Ready to hike to Pebble Creek, a 7km round trip walk. This took us quite a long time and reaching the creek we took a quite time, using our brain ! Sandrine gave us some reflection about rocks origin and how you can recognize them. Tonight, we’ll sleep less stupid than we are !
For dinner we invited our neighbors : two American girls. Nice evening, meeting these sisters, we made an effort on the preparation of the food : guacamole and chips, salad, rusted potatoes (pommes de terre sautées) and sausages, watermelon. They brought a potatoes beans soup.
Day 11 14/08/2019
Morning : Canyon waterfalls, two nice walks to see it, now we better understand the name “Yellowstone”. Saw a juvenile Osprey.
Lunch at the Canyon village, visit of the visitor center about Yellowstone caldera formation
Hike to submit of Mount Washburn !! About overview from the top to almost the whole Park. We could even see the Grand Teton, 121km away from us ! On the way up, we met bighorn families.
Day 12 15/08/2019
Christmas day !
Way to Canyon Campground
After arrival : showers, laundry, and lunch time
The weather was bad (raining a lot), so we decided to take a time to work on our scientific topic. The team has been divided in 2 parts : Jules and the girls will write an article about the related geysers at Norris especially Steamboat. Matteo and Charles are going to talk about the encounter between a bison and a grizzly.
Conference on sky stories and stars at 7pm with a scientific Ranger
For Christmas dinner : bacon and eggs, grilled fresh corn, salad, strawberry, raspberry, cream, chocolate and marshmallows. Everybody gave a gift to someone else ! A nice evening !
Day 13 16/08/2019
On the way back to Gros Ventre Campground, nice stop to see two bears foraging on a bison carcasse. Lunch time at the Lodge from where we had a wonderful view of the Grand Teton mountains. Back to the 1rst Camp : Gros Ventre.
Went to Jackson hole, little shopping and outside theater with cowboys and had diner over there. Hamburger at Wendy’s. Nice evening around the fire, jokes, marshmallow. Last evening in America…
Day 14 17/08/2019
Adventure is done. ☹ Time to say goodbye to Sandrine and Alizee.