I love when my dad calls me up to ask if I want to go on a hike. This time it was to go on a hike in a remote part of Yellowstone. We have been camping and hiking all over the 'metro' part of Yellowstone. This was a chance to go to the southwest and the wettest part of this National Park. Most of the year the bugs are so bad, the hike is unbearable and the ferns are up to your waist. We were excited to have the time to go in the fall when we could enjoy it. You can actually hike all the way to old faithful on this trail, I think dad said it would be around 30-40 miles...We opted for the the hike just under 17 miles. I had planned to take Jacob with me in the pack, but was very glad I listen to the voice of reason (the voices of Dad, Josie and Blake) who said to leave him at the cabin. We were lucky to have Mikyla and Erica tend ALL our kids while we hiked. I was worried that Jakey was going to be a bear but thanks to modern technology and good cell service I called just before noon and found out he had taken a nap and was a happy boy. I was able to stop worrying and enjoy the absolute beauty of this part of the earth. It was so nice to visit the whole way with Josie, Dad and Blake. It is not often I get to have uninterrupted adult conversation ALL DAY LONG. This was definitely one of those trips I will wrap up and tuck neatly in the corner of my heart to always have with me.
The hike started near (sort of near) mesa falls and in a very wooded area, then we had to cross an ocean of grass to another mountain range. The falls colors were just starting to change, and so was the weather. We started with a little mist, cool air and it was overcast. Mid day the sun came out and we got hot, with 5 miles left I fell in the river while crossing one of the many log bridges. At first I was annoyed for getting soaked, but then realized I was no more wet than before. It had started raining in a downpour and then it hailed, but it was good motivation to hustle back to the car.
The hike took us to some waterfalls, the first was called silver scarf falls, the second was dunanda falls(I don't think that I spelled it right?). So why go 17 miles for a waterfall? Reason 1; I like to go where only a few people have been, see a beauty that is relatively untouched. Reason 2; to see and absolutely breathtaking creation.
When we got to our destination, it was still a little cool but I was brave and got in the hot pots at the base of the falls. We were all in awe sitting in the hot pots watching the massive amounts of water raging over this mountain. I could not believe how much wind was created by the falling water. I was sad Jay could not have been there. I would have made him go with me behind the falls and steal a kiss. I tried to get Blake and Josie to live out my fantasy, but no such luck. As we soaked and relaxed in the hot tubs I kept watching the sky and the clouds were rolling in fast. Dad was so kind (since I didn't pack much) to share his chamois/camping towel as we decided it was time to head back. We quickly changed clothes (good thing it is in a remote area ;) if you know what I mean) and as we were changing one of the rain and hail storms started. I didn't pack any water shoes or sandals so barefoot I hustled the 400 yards back to where we could cross the river. I was a little nervous when the lightning and the thunder hit at the same time so I left everyone behind hoping to get under the tree on the other side of the river and put my shoes on. By the time I got to the tree the sun was coming back out and the rain/hail had stopped. We all had to take a deep breath to recover from the adrenaline of the flight:)
I decided I really need to take my kids on more hikes so they can learn to love and enjoy the earth in such a beautiful way. I can't wait for Dad's next hiking endeavor......