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Well, Timothy is around eight weeks old for this trip. Isn’t he cute? Here he is sleeping on mommy while waiting at the Old Faithful Geyser. I can’t believe we have taken him through five states since birth.

Our trip was pretty fun. It was a great LAST trip of the summer before we all returned to work and school. I have to admit I am dreading going back to work but I have some plans in the works that might allow me to stay at home again. YAY!

IMG_2002Our truck and camper took us to some amazing places. This is a picture of our rig at the Ayres Natural Bridge. It is a very neat location that we would love to camp at but there are no hookups here so we need to figure out how to get water into the camper somewhere so we don’t have to tow it. I will have to get much better at sterilizing bottles for Timmy if we choose to boondock somewhere like this.

The Ayres Natural Bridge is a wall of solid rock that was worn away by the creek that runs through it. There used to be an electric house there that used the creeks current to generate electricity. That is closed down now and the area was turned into a park. No pets are allowed in the park and camping is free! It’s open from April to September every year. I really hope we get a chance to visit this place again.

IMG_1982IMG_1995This was actuIMAG0423ally on our way home from Wyoming. Our trip started with a drive up I-25 into Wyoming. We stopped in Casper and stayed overnight at the River’s Edge RV Campground. While the campground was really a parking lot with some nice facilities, we found a beautiful area by the North Platte River with a bent over tree. Jason took a few shots of us there under the tree but it was pretty dark. He admits they aren’t good pictures. It was very beautiful from our point of view.

The next day we completed our drive up to Cody, WY. We were told this is the best place to stay while visiting Yellowstone. We wanted to stay at the Ponderosa Campground in Cody, but it was all booked so we settled for the Absaroka Campground. It was nice (also parking lot like) but we had grass around the camper and the people were super friendly. Our small camper was smushed between too SUPER HUGE RV’s. These were the 100 thousand dollar kind of RV’s. It certainly helped us feel safe. LOL!

IMG_1701We settled in for the week and the next day, made our way to Yellowstone National Park. Oh what a LONG drive that would be. While Cody isn’t far from the actual entrance, it was over 2 hours to get to anything significant inside the park. Joey really wanted to fish so we stopped at Fishing Bridge Park and bought a fishing pass. We decided to eat lunch next to Yellowstone Lake and Joey got to fish for 45 minutes while we waited for time to pass until Old Faithful was to erupt.

We misjudged the time it would take to get to Old Faithful so when we arrived, it had just erupted but, we had plenty of time for the day so we stayed. Unfortunately, Jason and I forgot ALL items for trekking Timmy in. We had no carrier, no stroller, nothing. So it looked like we were going to have to carry him. I had no idea what the park was like but we couldn’t go back to Cody so we made the sacrifice and carried Timmy with us.

IMG_1731We sat in front of Old Faithful and watched it spurt. The crowds began to arrive. Boy, there were people from ALL over the world here. We sat next to so many people from other countries. Italy, Germany, India, Philippines, the Middle East, etc. Jason sat next to two men from some other country that began screaming any time Old Faithful spit out something other then steam. We quietly made jokes about it while waiting for the anticipated eruption. Finally, it happened.

Joey was in awe as was I. Jason snapped a bunch of pictures. This was one of my favorites. I got chills as I watched the eruption. It was quite a sight and I couldn’t believe I was actually in Yellowstone. I was finally able to mark this off my bucket list! 🙂

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IMG_1843Once the eruption completed, the crowds dispersed. Most left but there was a field full of geysers. We decided to walk the trails despite not having anything to carry Timmy in other than our arms.

 

 

 

 

I can’t believe how many people just left because the geysers were amazing! Here is a picture of Joey on the trail taking a break while observing a spring.

 

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Here is another spring we viewed.

The smell of sulphur was strong everywhere and I was worried we were exposing Timmy to toxic fumes but if the birds and animals were flying around and drinking from the water that came from these geysers, I made the assumption we were okay. I could be wrong though.

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On the trail, the Lion’s Head Geysers erupted. The eruption lasted for like 10 minutes. It was a beautiful sight from where we were on the trail.

 

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This bacteria was also interesting to view. There were signs everywhere telling people not to disturb it or “write” in it. I thought that was hilarious! Who writes in bacteria?

 

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The ground in this area is very fragile. If you walk on it, you could fall through into a hot spring, fumarole or open up a geyser yet we saw people step on the ground to retrieve items they dropped. There was no way we would take that chance. These springs were boiling!

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On our way back to the parking lot, Old Faithful erupted again. Here is a shot from afar.

 

 

 

 

IMG_1917Here is a shot of Joey next to the river that runs through the park and geyser area. As we left the park, we were completely exhausted. It was after 6pm and we still had at least a two hour drive back to camp. I had planned to make dinner but this just wasn’t going to happen. We picked up some fast food once back in Cody.

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We decided to take the next day and visit some attractions in Cody. We choose the Buffalo Bill Museum. I HATE history to be honest but I wanted to make the family happy (Jason) so I cringed as I walked through the museum. LOL! It was actually a nice museum and I DID enjoy it. Jason spent about five hours in the Firearms museum. Despite all that time, he still didn’t see everything in just that section!

In the Buffalo Bill section, Joey found a reason to continue growing his hair long. The sign reads “Why Scouts Grew Their Hair Long.” Here Joey is by this sign. 20130806_161308

While he doesn’t need to protect his face from the elements, he truly believes he needs his long hair and this exhibit proved it. Now he can be like Buffalo Bill.

It was a great day which ended with us eating at the Wyoming’s Rib and Chophouse. I reviewed this restaurant on Trip Advisor. It was okay, quite expensive actually but the ribs were fall-off-the-bone.

 

 

 

After the exhaustion of driving all the way to Yellowstone and fearing the drive back to Denver after another day in the car, we opted to NOT visit Yellowstone again. There were places I wanted to visit in Yellowstone and we needed many more days in order to do so but we couldn’t make such a long trip again and then spend another day in the car. That would make three days traveling in a vehicle for longer than five hours. Soooo, we decided to stay in Cody again and visit more places.

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We visited the Old Town Trail there which was a put together city from the late 1800’s and early 1900’s. Basically, they took many old houses/buildings and brought them to this place to make an old town. It was a very neat town and also had graves. We ended this day with watching the Gunfighters at the Irma Hotel. While I couldn’t hear much of the dialogue, the boys loved it!

 

We ate at some nice places in Cody. We had breakfast at Our Place and Mojoe’s, YUM! Dessert at Peter’s CafĂ© and Granny’s Restaurant, and stopped at their candy store, Cowtown Candy and picked up some homemade fudge that was delicious!

The next day we made our way BACK to Casper and stayed at Fort Caspar Campground which is actually in Mills, WY just outside Caspar. This was one of the worst campgrounds we stayed at. It was truly a gravel parking lot with hookups. The showers were nice and the entrance to the camp was beautiful but there were so many stationary campers that it made the park uglier. There was a nice pond that Joey could fish in (which he did) and the North Platte was also available to visit. I didn’t leave the camper other than to shower.

IMG_1981IMG_1976The next day we completed our drive home where we stopped at Hell’s Half Acre. Here are some pictures of this area.

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We then stopped at the Ayres Natural Bridge which I already blogged about. We finally made it home around 9pm with all the stops and dinner at the Cracker Barrel.

It was a great trip and I am glad we did it even though we cut Yellowstone short. We will definitely go back again but next time we will stay in Yellowstone Park. All our friends recommended staying outside the park but the drive there was just too long. If you have been to Yellowstone and stayed inside the park, post your recommendations and/or experiences here!!