Our first stop would be Bozeman, Montana. For no other reason than there's an REI there :) Couldn't resist the urge to go visit when it was a mere 90 miles away. It was a little weird being in civilization again (there are about 40,000 people there, mostly from the university). But it was the cheapest gas we'd seen, so we fueled up and began the trek back. Instead of going back the way we came, we took another route so we could enter via the North gate.
Not far inside the gate, we made it to Mammoth Hot Springs. This is one of the more famous features in Yellowstone, a series of travertine terraces with hot springs flowing down them. It was really impressive. Not the kind of hot springs you'd want to get into though. There were lots of signs warning you not to step off the walkway, lest you fall through the thin top layer and scald yourself to death. There was a faint smell of sulfur, but not as overpowering as I'd expected. We walked up to one of the terraces, then headed back into town for a bite to eat.
|I'd like to see those tourists get that close to this guy!|
Side note: While we were taking our pictures, I noticed a man with a massive zoom lens on his Nikon. I asked what lens it was, and it was the very lens I had thought about renting for this trip! I asked how he liked it, to which he replied "I'm really disappointed." Uh oh. Then he went on with a litany of things he didn't like about it, including how Nikon didn't give you a real case for it, only a sock. He let me look through the viewfinder, and I agreed, it wasn't as crystal-clear as I'd expect a $2500 lens to be. I was glad I didn't bother renting it, but sad that my dream lens wasn't what I thought it'd be.
|I don't need a fancy zoom!|
Photos from Day 2