The Grand Canyon of Yellowstone

Yellowstone amazed us with all of its variety, and the variety included the Grand Canyon of Yellowstone.  In fact, the yellow rock walls of the canyon gave Yellowstone its name!

When we got to the parking lot in the morning around 10am, it was a little bit chaotic, but we managed to find a parking spot with very little trouble.  However, as we left there was a huge line of cars to get into the parking lot and even a huge line of people for the bathroom!

bathroom line – ugh!
The crowds unfortunately stopped us from exploring the area further, but the part we did see, during our hike on the South Rim trail and Uncle Tom’s trail.  As crowded as the area was, things were pretty peaceful on the trail.  We passed people coming and going, but we never felt too crowded and could go at our own pace.

The South Rim trail winds along the side of the canyon and offers some nice views.




As we walked along, we started getting views of the waterfall in the distance.



We eventually got to a viewpoint with a decent view of the waterfall (maybe a really good view – for those that don’t head down Uncle Tom’s Trail – but we had better views to come 😉 )


After a mile or so, we hit Uncle Tom’s Trail.  The sign warned that the hike could be difficult – but they obviously don’t know our super-hiking four year old!


The walk down the stairs was pretty easy, we smugly pranced down past people huffing and puffing their way up the stairs, giving no thought to the fact that it would soon be us…


Other than the fact that L decided that steep metal stairs fell in the category of “cliffs” when it came to things that petrified him.  So slowly and very cautiously he climbed down (ready for any bug that may be able outpace him)


We also got great views of the river below as we climbed down.


About 2/3 of the way down, we got the best view of the waterfall.


Of course, we couldn’t stop there, so down we climbed to the bottom of the path.


We procrastinated as long as we could before we had to start the climb back up.  It wasn’t too bad, but notice I don’t have any pictures. Too busy catching my breath 😉

The hike back along the rim was just as scenic as the way out and peaceful.


When we got back to the parking lot, it was b.a.n.a.n.a.s, so we decided to call it a day at the Canyon and head back to the hotel.

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