2006 Yellowstone Roadtrip

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

In 2006, I decided I would like to go on a field school for anthropology sometime. The idea was scary – to be somewhere completely foreign in both language and culture, without anyone you know and for an entire month. So I decided to see what being away for a while alone would be like in my own country. If I couldn’t handle that, well, there was no point for further thought on the field school, eh?

Originally, there was no destination. I had one week of vacation and I drove west, turning around mid-week. Zero. Destination. Do you know what that feels like? Giddyness. No stress of getting someplace in time to do something, no stress of getting lost – the entire focus was on the journey itself. And do you know what solitary travel is like? Perfection. No one to compromise with, no argument over the temperature of the car or the loudness of the speakers, and no one to annoy with frequent pee breaks. And in the end, a complete growing experience.

2006 Yellowstone Roadtrip

I did this trip on roughly 1000 dollars. About 650 was gas, if I remember correctly. I saved on food cost by bringing bread and cereal and then buying tiny amounts of milk and lunchmeat each day to last in my cooler. I saved on hotel bills by inadvertantly (and unexpectedly) sleeping in my car for a few nights. See, without having a destination, I did very little research and chose my birthday week in the hot hot heat of August, right? Which incidentally coincides with Sturgis Bike Week. That was quite an experience in and of itself! But all the hotels and campgrounds were full so…yeah.

Oh, why the outdated post? Well, I had thought these photos were lost forever!! But Boy surprised me by finding them. Some are still missing but we found the bulk of them, yay!

I crossed the great Mississippi River and it was a lot…less great…than I was expecting. Maybe it’s great elsewhere? I stayed overnight in Iowa next to this archaeological site that you could volunteer on but they were closed for the day. I almost went to Denver but decided I wouldn’t have time. Then I found a dinosaur dig that I registered for but getting lost prevented me from making it in time so that was cancelled too. Then, the photos begin:

The rock formations out there are a geologists dream. Having just taken a geology class, they were even more fascinating than if had I known nothing about them:

2006 Yellowstone Roadtrip
2006 Yellowstone Roadtrip
2006 Yellowstone Roadtrip
2006 Yellowstone Roadtrip
2006 Yellowstone Roadtrip
2006 Yellowstone Roadtrip
2006 Yellowstone Roadtrip
2006 Yellowstone Roadtrip

I rode a Giant Jackalope, crossed the Continental Divide, saw a lot of waterfalls, and discovered I was standing on the edge of a super volcano (and having taken said geology class, it was a little daunting).

2006 Yellowstone Roadtrip
2006 Yellowstone Roadtrip
2006 Yellowstone Roadtrip
2006 Yellowstone Roadtrip

I saw miles and miles of devastation from a forest fire, listened to a short lecture about buffalo, and saw Old Faithful (among many other beautiful sites).

2006 Yellowstone Roadtrip
2006 Yellowstone Roadtrip
2006 Yellowstone Roadtrip
2006 Yellowstone Roadtrip
2006 Yellowstone Roadtrip

I had to spend the first night in my car once I entered the park, down a super duper dark gravel road, to some random campground (outside of the park, beyond the filled hotels, in the state of Wyoming), passing signs about grizzlies and freaking myself out about the whole prospect. It was like 2am by the time I could stop to sleep – no other cars or people that I could see. Creepy. I had tried to avoid contact with Boy or anyone during my trip except to text my locations, but I needed some control over my imagination – bears ripping open my sunroof trying to attack me for my box of food. I almost peed in my pants (literally too – I had to go so badly but there was no way I would walk to the little shack!!) Thankfully he convinced me to get out of the vehicle and at least pull my blanket out of my trunk, as I found out harshly that the nights up there are COLD.

2006 Yellowstone Roadtrip
2006 Yellowstone Roadtrip

But then I found the buffalo. I have gobs and gobs of photos of them – August is mating season, wouldn’t you know, so they were swarming. I saw babies and beefy males fighting (in fact I have some vids where they pushed into my car!). Stunning experience. I limit it to this one photo though because I was fascinated to learn that they could swim. Who knew?

2006 Yellowstone Roadtrip

Then on my way back I almost went to Mount Rushmore. But the idea of blowing up nature’s beauty to make faces of people, as if they are more important than nature itself? RIDICULOUS. Tacky, gawdy, AWFUL. (And then later during cultural anthropology, learning how devastating that must have been for the local natives? Heartless.) I stopped at Devil’s Tower instead. And was surprised to find that the locals still practice their beliefs there.

2006 Yellowstone Roadtrip
2006 Yellowstone Roadtrip
2006 Yellowstone Roadtrip

And then I found a little bitty ranch where I could feed the uber adorable prairie dogs. So cute!!

2006 Yellowstone Roadtrip
2006 Yellowstone Roadtrip

My car and I made it to the Badlands next. I found them appropriately named. I walked to the end of one of the little walk ways, snapped some photos, and left right away. The Badlands? In August? Not a good idea, unless you want to waste away to dust and bones in a matter of minutes. Oh, and there were signs about some snakes I wanted to avoid…

2006 Yellowstone Roadtrip
2006 Yellowstone Roadtrip
2006 Yellowstone Roadtrip
2006 Yellowstone Roadtrip
2006 Yellowstone Roadtrip
2006 Yellowstone Roadtrip
2006 Yellowstone Roadtrip
2006 Yellowstone Roadtrip

A funny surprise on my way back, the Jolly Green Giant!

2006 Yellowstone Roadtrip
It was an amazing experience. I suggest it to everyone. People say “What would I do? I would be bored! I need to know where I am going, though” and bla bla bla. Really, what are you afraid of? Quit being silly and drive:)

 

See more posts related to:

2 Comments

  1. Jaclyn

    I glad I got to see these pictures! Amazing! I remember when you told me you were planning on doing this particular trip. I thought you were crazy, but adventurous. Super jealous on this end…I’ll have to ask you particulars next time we talk! I’ve always wanted to road trip out west.

    Reply
    • CaLynn

      Yes, we need to get tea soon! 🙂

      Reply

Leave a Reply to CaLynn Cancel reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Looking for more cases of the Crafties?
Sydney Pouch: Porch

Sydney Pouch: Porch

I made another Sydney Pouch, this time reminding me of sitting in my gramma and grampa’s screened in porch up on the hill.

read more
Sydney Pouch: Garden

Sydney Pouch: Garden

I made another Sydney Pouch by Roxy Creations, this time a yellow garden theme with a different method of construction.

read more
Stitch Club: Collier

Stitch Club: Collier

As part of TextileArtist.org Stitch Club, Jennifer Collier inspired me to stitch a paper glove.

read more
Stitch Club: Ferguson

Stitch Club: Ferguson

As part of TextileArtist.org Stitch Club, Ali Ferguson inspired me to create a (slightly junk-journal inspired) hand-bound sketchbook using a mix of pages and embellishments.

read more
Needlemaking

Needlemaking

I link to a short video about how needles and pins are made with modern technology.

read more
Stitch Club: Colella

Stitch Club: Colella

As part of TextileArtist.org Stitch Club, Jodi Colella inspired me to create a set of fabric charms.

read more
Stitch Club: Kaner

Stitch Club: Kaner

As part of TextileArtist.org Stitch Club, Sabine Kaner inspired me to create an abstract design based on crumpled paper.

read more
Stitch Club: Stapley

Stitch Club: Stapley

As part of TextileArtist.org Stitch Club, Vinny Stapley inspired me to create a panel with a dune grass motif using a lacey neutral color palette.

read more
Hoop-D-Do Challenge

Hoop-D-Do Challenge

My embroidery guild always has an annual challenge of some type and this year was our “Hoop-D-Do” project, whereby we were to create a work using specific stitches to be displayed in the hoop itself. My display of flowers in a “wood” bowl speaks the 70s to me. And, as usual, I didn’t stick to the rules well and added my own flare – ha!

read more
Stitch Club: Henderson

Stitch Club: Henderson

As part of TextileArtist.org Stitch Club, Ailish Henderson inspired me to create a mixed media portrait of my sweet javanese cat.

read more
Felt Ornament: J

Felt Ornament: J

I made a felt ornament in the shape of the letter J for a friend. I was inspired by a letter R given to me, which hails from Mexico.

read more
Locket Pincushion

Locket Pincushion

I was recently given this beautifully elegant carved vintage locket, and I turned it into my travel pin cushion.

read more
Gertenbach’s talisman: seashell

Gertenbach’s talisman: seashell

I was inspired by Victoria Gertenbach’s cover article on Quilting Arts magazine to create this seashell talisman with embroidery, beads, and a bit of longing for the beach!

read more
Stitch Club: Kelly

Stitch Club: Kelly

As part of TextileArtist.org Stitch Club, Anne Kelly inspired me to create a little booklet of mixed media.

read more
Tiny Bee Mural

Tiny Bee Mural

I made a tiny felt mural with an embroidered bee and flowers for my gardening friend.

read more
a Cassette Tape

a Cassette Tape

Inspired by an image online, I made a felt cassette tape displayed on a small canvas for my nephew’s birthday.

read more
Stitch Club: Holmes

Stitch Club: Holmes

As part of TextileArtist.org Stitch Club, Cas Holmes inspired me to create a momigami (Japanese method of kneading paper) mixed media landscape.

read more