To celebrate 30 years of marriage, Tim and I wanted to do something big. We've been able to get away for an overnight the past couple of years but had never felt we could leave our children for much longer than that. (Once we went cross country skiing in Michigan and planned to be gone two nights. Alas, I was worried about how things were faring at home and we drove home early after finishing skiing.)
|Colter Bay cabin built in 1922|
The Tetons are still as stunning as they were the last time we were there, and how wonderful to be able to spend five days with my beloved together in this part of the world that displays God's majesty so abundantly! We took some amazing hikes, the best we've ever had, and the only problem was that we were left wondering if we might just get back again some day.
The Jackson, WY airport is actually in the national park. After picking up our rental car (small bug there because I forgot to bring that paperwork and we couldn't remember which car company of the six we had an arrangement with) we drove to Jenny Lake. As a precaution, we'd also rented some bear spray in town. Since we'd been traveling since 5AM, we wanted only a short hike the first day and chose to hike around String Lake. It was gorgeous, partly because of the views of the mountains but also because the terrain varied so much in the short 3.4 mile loop. And best of all, near the end we came upon a couple that whispered to us there was a black bear just off the trail in the woods. We followed along as the bear ambled in parallel to the trail about 20-30 yards away. (That husband also had a can of bear spray, which gave us more confidence than we probably should have had.) I didn't get great pictures, but here's the bear:
|Bear is in the center of photo|
|Close up - Sorry about resolution|
Animals abound in these two parks. Tim says they are like zoos without walls, and many of the tourists come particularly to catch a glimpse of a moose, grizzly, or wolf. We love the scenery most, but we did see plenty of critters.
Elk are plentiful...
as are buffalo, especially in Yellowstone.
Here's a mule deer that hanging around our cabin:
On the last day we found this chubby marmot sunning himself on a rock:
And here are some pics from our hikes:
Mount Washburn, Yellowstone
|There was still snow on Mt. Washburn|
|Top of Mount Washburn. From here there are excellent views of most of the park. You can see the Yellowstone Canyon near top of picture.|
Finally, a few shots of some of the gorgeous wildflowers. They bloomed everywhere, but different varieties grew at different altitudes. Some alpine meadows were dotted with red, orange, yellow, and purple blooms. Stunning!
We're so thankful to our children who stepped up to the plate to manage things during the five days we were gone, for our friends, the U's, who kept Paul (!), and for Kara having Ben over for several play days with Annie! We only worried a bit, especially during the time we had no cell service and no internet, but God was gracious and kept everyone safe and pretty happy. The worst crisis was that Jon and Faith couldn't find her piano teacher's house and ended up having to reschedule for another day. Also, for some reason, two of the boys decided that this was a good time to try bleaching their hair. ;)
|Clouds over Jackson Lake|
Psalm 125: 1, 2 Those who trust in the LORD Are as Mount Zion, which cannot be moved but abides forever. As the mountains surround Jerusalem, So the LORD surrounds His people From this time forth and forever.