Sunday, August 15, 2010


Lower Yellowstone Falls

-as always, click any photo for technical details and larger sizes-

I've been to Yellowstone a few times before, but only in the winter when some of the park roads are closed, so I'd never seen the geysers. Crazy, I know. So my first direction was toward Old Faithful. Driving through the geyser basins on the way there, it looked like there were fires all over the place. It was steam from the geysers. Everywhere!


I got back to Old Faithful and decided to do a time lapse of an eruption event, 15 minutes in 30 seconds. So I set up the camera to shoot 1 frame per second, and ended up running out of time and restarting the sequence because the eruption was late. So after sitting there for 30 minutes listening to the 'click ... click ... click' of my camera, Old Faithful finally erupted, and some oblivious people ran right out and stood in front of my camera to watch it. Effort ruined. I at least got to watch the eruption with my eyeballs.

After that, I walked up onto the hill behind Old Faithful, where there are a plethora of other springs and geysers on various schedules. I watched a few small (~4 foot) eruptions and generally had a difficult time trying to shoot them. It's a dynamic event that doesn't translate to a still photo very well. That's why I wanted to time lapse Old Faithful. Well, here's a spring, anyway:


I spent about an hour and a half wandering around among the geysers, and it was time for Old Faithful to erupt again! So I set my camera up again, this time in a spot no one could mess up the shot, and managed to get a 900-shot sequence filmed just like I wanted. The background clouds and sky made this one even better than the one I (tried) to film earlier. No video to show yet, though, as I haven't had time to mess with it yet. I hope it turns out!

Drove past Yellowstone Lake:

Yellowstone Lake

And ran into a traffic jam due to Buffalo standing in the road:

Bison Bison

Bison Bison

Here's a feature called 'Dragon's Tongue' (I think) that is constantly sloshing waves in and out of the hole:

Dragon's Tongue

Then I got to Lower Yellowstone Falls:

Lower Yellowstone Falls

Lower Yellowstone Falls

I saw a sign for 'Norris Geyser Basin' and turned in, and would you guess what they have there? More geysers and springs!


I read somewhere that Yellowstone has more geysers and hot springs than the entire rest of the world combined. I could almost believe it...

I stopped by the 'Boiling River', where a (very!) hot spring flows into a cold river, and you can soak in it an control your temperature by where you stand in the flow. 100 times better than a hot tub. I sat in it for about an hour, then left just in time to shoot a setting-sun:

Yellowstone Sunset

'Don't shoot into the sun' is one of those rules that I usually have good luck when I break it. I had to use HDR on that shot, though.

Leaving the park, the sun was dropping behind the mountains to the west and casting neat light on the mountains to the east, so here's one more:


And that's that for now. I shot several hundred pictures, and when I get the chance I'll go through them again. I know there are more good ones in there...

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