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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
On one hand, this isn't a big deal because I live close by. On the other hand, we typically avoid the place in the summer due to the crowds. But my wife is running a 1/2 marathon in West Yellowstone this Saturday so we decided to be touristy and camp/hike near Canyon Village since we haven't been there in a long time.

So far in the couple months that the park has been open;

- A group of Canadians got the entire MT/WY area in an uproar after they walked to the edge of the Grand Prismatic Spring. It's illegal to leave the boardwalk in many places and there are signs up all over to this affect.

- A lady got too close to an elk and was rammed (search for it on youtube, it's hilarious).

- a 13 year old boy was badly burned when he left the boardwalk and fell into a hot spring.

- a 20-something guy is currently presumed dead after doing the same thing as that 13 year old.


I'm not sure if I'm excited or nervous to be around the "human wildlife".
 

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On one hand, this isn't a big deal because I live close by. On the other hand, we typically avoid the place in the summer due to the crowds. But my wife is running a 1/2 marathon in West Yellowstone this Saturday so we decided to be touristy and camp/hike near Canyon Village since we haven't been there in a long time.

So far in the couple months that the park has been open;

- A group of Canadians got the entire MT/WY area in an uproar after they walked to the edge of the Grand Prismatic Spring. It's illegal to leave the boardwalk in many places and there are signs up all over to this affect.

- A lady got too close to an elk and was rammed (search for it on youtube, it's hilarious).

- a 13 year old boy was badly burned when he left the boardwalk and fell into a hot spring.

- a 20-something guy is currently presumed dead after doing the same thing as that 13 year old.


I'm not sure if I'm excited or nervous to be around the "human wildlife".
Don't forget the a-holes that put the baby bison in the back of their vehicle because it looked cold.
 

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The 20-year-old falling into the hot spring doesn't surprise me. You feel immortal at that age. I have a photo of one of my friends standing behind one of those "do not go beyond this point" signs- taken when we were in our early twenties. He wasn't the only one doing that (I didn't; the guys would.)

Thought that a 13-year-old would still have enough fear to avoid breaking the rules like that- guess not.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Don't forget the a-holes that put the baby bison in the back of their vehicle because it looked cold.
Oh gosh, how did I forget that one?

Actually, the guys that did that had a somewhat decent excuse. The part about it looking cold was sloppy reporting - it had just been born (I think it still had the umbilical cord attached) but it's herd had left it behind.

The father and son that took it were originally from Namibia where parks/preserves actually do try to reunite wayward animals with their herds. It's common for people there to try to connect such animals with park staff to initiate the reintroduction process. They assumed Yellowstone worked the same way.

That calf would have died within a couple days whether or not they messed with it.
 

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Yellowstone pretty much rules. The Grand Tetons always impress, including the various day hikes one can take near the base. Yeah, we went during May, just before the swarms of human wildlife. I did manage to bring my bicycle on that vacation, riding in sections both inside and outside the park.
 

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I live near Yosemite and go into the Park every year. People die at Yosemite from carelessness, unusual accidents, and from vehicles that speed around. But for the most part it's a safe place to visit and people just go in there and take pictures, go to the gift shop and walk around. Backpacking is restricted to a lottery type thing and basically for most people you will never go backpacking at Yosemite again. Even hiking up Half Dome is on the lottery. I applied this year and lost the lottery. I have never had any luck with lotteries or raffles and generally just do not play. But I thought I would give it a shot and of course I lost. Day hikes do not require a permit as long as you do not hike up Half Dome.

I have never been to Yellowstone but it's on my list of things to do. I am sure I can visit the park and obey the rules and be safe. I take a lot of photos as almost everyone that goes to a place like that.
 

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Have a good time. Yellowstone is truly awesome, in so many ways. I've visited a couple of times, though it's been a few years now. One of my favorite memories is the hike up Mount Washburn, where the view of the surrounding ranges from the 10,000-foot summit is breathtaking. There's a fire lookout tower up there that you can go in, and it was manned by a very young-looking ranger the day we went. I asked him if he ever gets tired of the view (they stay up there a week at a time), and he looked down kind of shyly and said, "I'm from Kansas!"
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
You might just be facing widespread closures around the hot springs.[/url]
I don't know why they would close more than just Norris Geyser Basin, where that accident happened. Either way we're not planning to visit any hot springs.

Part of our reason for this visit is because my friend is the Park's landscape architect. A number of the overlooks around the Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone are scheduled for considerable upgrades using his designs in the next few years. We're going to visit a handful of these spots so we can reminisce about "the way is was back in the day" once they are modified. Then we can give him crap about how he ruined everything :p

Honestly, after 15 years of living here, the front-country hot springs get kinda boring. There ARE numerous springs and geysers that you can hike to and that don't have all of the safety rails etc. around them. These wild areas are pretty darn cool to see because it really feels like you're discovering them for yourself. Safety precautions still apply though.
 

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Have a great weekend! Yellowstone is a one-of-a-kind place. Living nearby, you already understand the insanity that can be part of the experience. Just let that roll off and appreciate the wildlife and scenery that make the place special.
 

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Been there, done that... never going back. Boo-Boo stole my Pick-a-nick basket...
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Been there, done that... never going back. Boo-Boo stole my Pick-a-nick basket...
Other than passing through to get to Cooke City, and a trip with relatives last summer, this is the first time I'll have been in the park in about 7 years. Even longer for my wife. It's actually a shame.

I hate to say it but they need to start limiting the number of daily visitors. The park superintendent said that that is an inevitability that will probably go into effect in 10-20 years. I'm wondering whether all the recent events will speed that up or at least increase efforts of enforcing the rules that are in place. Although, the things that have been in the news this spring have ALL happened before, almost annually, just not all at the beginning of the season.

Winter is an amazing time to be there. Boo-boo is asleep but the ravens do know how to unzip backpacks and fly away with sandwiches. Ask me how I know.
 

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I'm sure you know but I'll just add get up waaay early to avoid the traffic depending which way you are going etc. and good luck to her for her half!
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
I'm sure you know but I'll just add get up waaay early to avoid the traffic depending which way you are going etc. and good luck to her for her half!
No chance of that unfortunately. The half starts at 7am so we probably won't even enter the park until after 9 on Saturday. We're driving our VW Westfalia though so even sitting still in traffic is enjoyable.

Thanks for the good luck wish! We're not sure who/how many competitors will be there but she might have a shot at top 5 in her age/gender class.

I'll be sure to take photos of the tourist mayhem.
 

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Been there, done that... never going back. Boo-Boo stole my Pick-a-nick basket...
Did you ever wonder why Yogi didn't just maul Mr. Ranger-Sir to death and eat 'im?

WAY more food there than just a 'tasty pic-i-nic basket'.
 

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The 20-year-old falling into the hot spring doesn't surprise me. You feel immortal at that age. I have a photo of one of my friends standing behind one of those "do not go beyond this point" signs- taken when we were in our early twenties. He wasn't the only one doing that (I didn't; the guys would.)

Thought that a 13-year-old would still have enough fear to avoid breaking the rules like that- guess not.
...his name was "Stew"......
 

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Love Yellowstone. I gotta say, though, that it's terribly, terribly dangerous. All those folks doing stuff like getting too close to an elk or falling off a boardwalk into the hot spring! Whenever I stroll onto the Number 2 lane of the 405 to do some texting I never get hurt.
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Well, that was a pleasant enough trip. I don't have any photos to post 'cause they're all on my wife's phone.

We ended up having to take the long way to our campsite because a herd of bison were wandering down a fairly long section of road with no way for them to move to the side due to cliffs. The rangers were turning people around, said it would likely be 3 hours before the road was clear.

We had some rain but were able to take a nice hike to a waterfall that can't be seen from the roads. We saw a grizzly and 2 cubs near Mammoth and I will say that the bear jam was the longest I've been in. The Lake area seems to have far less traffic.

Wifey killed it at the race! 4th place out of 256 (female age 40 to 44) and 127 out of 2,560 overall (men and women). It sounds like this will become an annual trip for us now.
 

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Love Yellowstone. I gotta say, though, that it's terribly, terribly dangerous. All those folks doing stuff like getting too close to an elk or falling off a boardwalk into the hot spring!

Whenever I stroll onto the Number 2 lane of the 405 to do some texting I never get hurt.
The secret is to stand on those dash-y white lines.
 
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