Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Runnells Clan Meets For Yellowstone Adventures

Yellowstone National Park, WY
Today we met with Tom, Ann, Daniel and Xavier, and thus began the much-anticipated Yellowstone leg of our journey.  We arrived early to Colter Bay Campground and found a site to share with our camping companions. While we waited for them to arrive, we explored the trails weaving through the campground.   We also explore the massive gift shop/grocery store.  Mid-afternoon, the other Runnells family arrived, and we settled into camp.  After dinner, we explored the Lakeshore Trail and took in the impressive views of the Grand Teton.  While on the hike, Xavier made great use of some of his presents, including his combination spoon-fork-knife-bottle opener.  When we returned to camp, we celebrated Xavier’s 8th birthday with min-cakes and candles, a great start to our trip together. 
Early Wednesday morning, after our first warm night of sleep (Thank you, weather gods), we packed up camp, yet again, and headed to Yellowstone.  Though the entrance to the park was a mere 20 miles from Grand Teton National Park, it took nearly 90 minutes to get to Madison Campground.  Making the trek even tougher was the distinct lack of wildlife to be seen.  Once we arrived, we settled into our new “home” and enjoyed lunch.  Then, we explored some of the many geysers and other geothermal features.  The mud pots were very interesting.  Everything was smelly, very smelly. 
Geothermal features have quite the odor - they sure don’t smell like roses! 
We finally broke in our pudgy pie makers and had a fine Italian feast – pudgy pie pizzas and wine. After dinner, as has become the practice, we took a walk to explore.  We walked along the river and spotted a bison grazing in the field.  Brian and Xavier were expert bison photographers by the time it was all said and done.  Xavier was happy for both the photography lesson from his cousin and the action shots he took (buffalo have to poo quite a lot).  We enjoyed an excellent fire after returning to camp and then called it a night. 
Uncle Tom, Daniel, Xavier, Ann, and me (with some strangers thrown in the mix).  Can you find us all?

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