Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming

Yellowstone is not a hiker's park. There are no big mountains or elaborate trail system. This is more a park about geysers and animals. This is a great park if you are white, own a $50,000 SUV and don't wish to walk more than 100 feet with your expensive camera. I guess these folks have to vacation somewhere, but I can find better places. 25 years ago on my last trip, my friend and I stayed one night in the park and then got frustrated with all the people and gridlock, so we left. This time it wasn't high season so I had more patience, a tiny bit more patience but not much. There were fewer people and a lot more bison. The bison feel they own the place which is the way it should be. People seem to be on their best behavior. There are lots of things boiling out of the ground. The roads in the park to the south are still closed because the bears are doing things and moving around. They, apparently, don't like people.

People use their big expensive cameras to take nice pictures. Crapass was feeling a little underloved and is starting to make a strange noise but still took plenty of pics. Some of them are a little fuzzy.

I can only assume the rangers at Yellowstone and Teton are forced to attend the Dick Cheney School of Public Relations because they are rude and useless. The VCs don't open until 9AM which is way too late for me. However, I can't say enough good things about all the people who work for Xanterra, the company that runs the hotels and concessions. All their employees seem to have a firm grip on the English language and will bend over backward for you.

At the north entrance of the park is an arch that says, "For the Benefit and Enjoyment of the People". It should really say, "For the Benefit and Enjoyment of SOME of the People". While I was there I saw only one black person, no Latinos, no Indians and the only Asians I saw were from a tour group from Asia. One would never know that the United States of America was a melting pot if you visited Yellowstone National Park. This place could do much better.


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