The journey today should have taken about five hours but we didn’t rush, as I couldn’t resist stopping frequently to take photographs. There are no wineries in this area and so photography took over as my primary consideration and method of remembering the area. The weather was perfect. There was sunshine, shadow, fluffy clouds, plains, mountains, fences, cows and rivers that just cried out for us to stop and record them on digital sensors.
This was a day when I brought out the big boy – the 70-200mm zoom that weighs a ton but is such a pleasure to use on my Nikon 300. Interestingly, up until now, I have used my SLR less than I had expected, relying to a large extent on my smaller Lumix GF1 which has a fixed focus f1.7 lens that is pin sharp and super fast. It is amazing how sometimes stripping things down to the basics frees you to be more creative. To zoom in and out with that camera, I have to use my feet and move back and forth, or alternatively I can manipulate the image on the computer later. Anyway, enough of the techy stuff; the important thing is that I tried my best to record some of the scenes on the cameras as much as anything to remind myself that nature is so immense, so awesome that no matter what equipment you have, recording it in two dimensions does not do it justice.
Part of our journey took us on Interstate 15 and Interstate 90 and we crossed the Continental Divide twice. These stretches of highway have to be some of the most beautiful in USA and there was hardly anyone on them. The lack of commercialization is so refreshing in these areas.
Our hotel is a Best Western Plus and our very reasonably priced room overlooks the Yellowstone River. We had dinner in the Cowboy Grill (barbecue pork and bottles of Bud Lite!) and I am writing this as the sound of the gushing river can be heard outside our window. Tomorrow we will go into the park and see what we can, hopefully ending up in Cody on the east side. The weather forecast is not good (rain and snow) and we are trying to get confirmation that the road to Cody is open. We fleetingly saw a sign on the way in that suggested it may be closed and they have also had avalanches on some roads, so tomorrow could be another adventure!