To Yellowstone National Park

August, 1960

Leaving Seattle, we drove across Washington and Idaho into Montana and headed for the west gate of Yellowstone National Park. This is my favorite of the vistas we found in the big sky country. It is somewhere in the vicinity of Butte, Montana.

We had our meals alongside the road. John is involved in one of our pancake and egg meals.

Sam was acknowledged as the best pancake cook, a position of considerable status and importance with this hungry crew. It was particularly appreciated out here in the middle of Idaho off to the side of the road. All of us helped out with the camping and food preparation chores, me least of all since I always had the camera in my hands.

For our next meal we were able to find a nice roadside park with a picnic table.

We slept wherever we could find to pitch our two puptents at the end of the day. We cooked up whatever we had on the Coleman stove. We were fortunate to have good weather the whole trip.

Campground cooking

This was home for the night, along the road somewhere between Oregon and Yellowstone. This was our standard configuration, with our two pup tents tied together.

As we approached Yellowstone from the west, we went through this major landslide area. It's origin was a sizable earthquake in the area, but I can't recall how long before our visit that the earthquake happened. We had heard about the earthquake, but were surprised to find such dramatic evidence of it along our route. They were still doing major road work where it had taken out the road.

John and Sam involved with breakfast preparation at a roadside park. Jerry points out a small furry animal which has invited itself to breakfast.

It turned out that the squirrel had opportunistically built its home close to the picnic table, so when it got a piece of our pancake, it scurried off home.

Bears were a big topic of conversation as we entered the campground in west Yellowstone. We pitched our pup tents in the campground, but were warned to not have any food in out tents. We locked everything in the trunk of Sam's car and settled in for the night. The next morning, we found that there was good basis for the warning. We felt fortunate that we had put all our food in the trunk, since bears had ripped a couple of tents and the cloth top of someone's convertible during the night, looking for food. We saw 108 bears that day by my count! As we headed out for a drive through Yellowstone, there seemed to be bears everywhere!

This bear was just sitting beside the road. He certainly didn't look hungry, but he wasn't passing up any opportunity. Lots of folks, including us, were feeding the bears. They seemed quite tame, but we didn't get out of the car.

Bears by the pair. We encountered several full-fledged "bear-jams" as people stopped to look at the bears.

The fine specimen of a black bear at left was just sitting up on the roadside, licking his chops for the next snack from the cooperative tourists. The cub below had to use a more aggressive strategy if he was going to get anything, so he reached up to the car window and put on his most wistful look.

We started what was to be an exhilirating drive around Yellowstone, which I have come to regard as the master National Park, with something of everything to see.

To hot springs and waterfalls in Yellowstone

West Trip,1960

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