Monday, July 27, 2009

It took us to after 11:00 pm to get back to the camper. The kids got really silly in the back seat of the truck on the way home. We had to wait for 30 minutes in another construction zone. It was pitch black outside by then. Not easy driving in the mountains in pitch black lighting. One great thing by the time we got back to the camper, the stars were numerous, never saw so many in my life before. Well off to Mount Rushmore this week and then home soon.
The Park was just awesome at sunset. It got dark fast, soon after we took these pictures. We had to get out by 10:00 before the gates were put up. We made it out by 9:54 pm. We still had to drive through Grand Teton National Park to get back to our campsite.

One more picture opportunity.
After we cleared the Bison, we stopped to check out this lake because the mere beauty of the lake drew us to take a closer look.
I had never seen so many bison in my life.
We were amazed that the herd of bison kept going. They were continuing to come up from below the valley and didn't want to stop. Notice the park ranger car in the picture. Tony finally took the opportunity to push forward when a mother bison had a hard time getting the baby bison to cross, then he took off with the truck or else we would be there forever!!!
This is what delayed us for so long. It was a herd of bison slowly crossing the road! It was sometime after 8:30 pm and we had to be out of the park by 10:00 pm because the roads are closed down.
Here are some of the pictures we took during the second traffic jam.
After a while the rain went away and it became quite nice, the sun poked out its head. We were struck in traffic, we already went through a construction zone and couldn't understand what was causing the problem. We were delayed for about 45 minutes as we slowly crawled through the park. It gave Kristen and myself a change to take more pictures. We soon discovered what the problem was. We first saw a ranger go quickly pass us up and go on ahead.
Kristen and myself took as many pictures as we could even though the thunder was all around us. By the time we made it back to the car, the raindrops were falling steadily. The kids wanted to continue the drive through the park even though we were driving through a rain storm. They really enjoyed the beauty around them. We continued the 92 miles around the park, in the rain listening to satellite radio set to Broadway Hits, getting pounded by hail at one point and going through one construction zone which we were warned about by the park ranger.
Aaron starting to run as the storm began to come over us.
The wind was something else by this time. Blowing hot water right into our faces.

Aaron at this point enjoyed the hot steam from the geyser because the temperature dropped and he was getting cold from the strong wind.
We had a nice lunch in the parking lot. We put the cooler away and started to walk the boardwalk around the geysers. As soon as we started our tour, the wind grew strong, the sky dark with thunder. We were stuck taking the whole 1/4 mile trail around. We did the best we could and hurried up.
We decided to visit more of the Park, stopping at the Midway Geyser Basin. We decided to eat our lunch/dinner in the parking lot first because the kids were getting hungry.
We finally made it to Yellow Stone Park and were able to see "Old Faithful" do its thing. It's a very large park, we chose to do the lower loop of the park which is 96 miles long.

Just a few feet from the previous picture, I took this one. We were on a cliff and a little afraid we would fall over. That's why the kids turned towards the road to get their picture taken in the previous picture.
While driving thru the Grand Teton, we found we just had to stop and see the beauty.
Sunday July 26, 2009. We started our Journey to Yellow Stone National Park. You first have to drive thru Grand Teton National Park around 29 miles to get to the entrance of Yellow Stone National Park. Note at this time the nice weather we are having.

Friday, July 24, 2009

Its now Friday, July 22, 09 and after spending an enjoyable morning in Chatfied State Park, eating breakfast outside in our PJ's, gazing at the mountains, sipping our coffee, we packed up the camper to head off to our next adventure, The Grand Teton and Yellow Stone National Park in Wyoming. We have a stay over in Rawling Wyoming because we don't want to travel for 8+ hours. We want to slow down and take our time. Thats the only reason I am just now able to update my blog. More to come. See you Later, Annie
On Wednedsay July 22, we headed toward Denver, and stayed at Chatfied State Park which is just South of Denver Co. We visited with my cousin, Sue Mattox and her husband Gary . They had the friendliest dogs ever.
By this time we had forgave each other for getting lost earlier. Happy Again!!!
A quick picture during the tour.
Josh standing in front of a "Kiva"
Aaron always liked to get inside if he could.
We had 5, 8-10' ladders to climb during our 1 hour tour, including 100 ft. climb to get out of "Cliff Palace" through narrow stone openings.
This is "Cliff Palace". We had a long way to go to get to it.

Take note of the little people up on the hill. That where we started our tour of "Cliff Palace"
Josh, Kristen and Aaron in front of Spruce Tree Village.
We headed on our own to Spruce Tree Terrace.
This is the only thing I remember when I was a young child.
So finally after walking back to the parking lot, we finally found Tony and Kristen. Finally we were able to start our tour. I had Kristen join the boys in the first building we visited for a family shot. Tony said it was just like when he was in the grocery store with me. He usually turns around and I'm gone. At least when we are shopping we can usually text and meet up. Out here texting wasn't working due to a lack of cell phone service.
We started to search down an even longer path to an area called "Coyote Village" We didn't stay long because at this point I was getting real worried.
So Josh, Aaron and myself started our search for our lost loved ones. We headed down a path toward the Pipe Shrine House which was made up of a lot of these circular "kiva" as shown in the above picture. They were circular rooms used for family gatherings and religious ceremonies. Needless to say after walking down this long path and finding no one around, I started to get worried and was less interested in visiting the sites. I told the boys we had to keep looking and went to look in another area of the village.
So as you can see, Aaron is standing alone at our first stop. You notice that Kristen and Tony are no where to be found. I was starting to get a little worried so I called the boys back together and told them we should look for Kristen and Dad. We then started out on our search.
We stopped at the visitors center and purchased tickets for the 4:30 pm tour of the Cliff Palace. They also have a lot of free cliff dwelling area to visit on your own. We decided to visit an area called "Far View" an Ancient Farming Community on our own to use up some time before our scheduled visit. As we got out of the car, I thought Tony heard me say we should visit this building that was right in front of us first. I guess he didn't hear what I said and the boys and I went ahead to do some site seeing on our own. Above is one of the first pictures I took of Josh and Aaron visiting the site which was right by our car. We were able to climb inside of this building. I kept waiting for Kristen and Tony to show up to join us an they never did. We kept going and I started to get a little worried. Where was Tony and Kristen. I turned my back and they were gone.
Add ImageWe made it to Mesa Verde National Park on Tuesday July 21, 09. We stayed at Mesa Verde RV Resort which was really nice. Swimming pool and the cleanest showers, laundry, and bathrooms I have ever seen. The Park entrance was only 1/2 mile from where we were staying. One surprise though was you had to drive 20 miles through mountains to get to see the Indians cliff dwellings.

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Our campground where we stayed at in William, AZ. right out side the Grand Canyon about 30 miles away. Not like a parking lot, more like a real campground we are used to except we were surrounded by mountains.

One more windy shot. We came home covered in sand/dirt.

Josh posing in the wind.
Before we boarded the bus at Powell Point, we stopped for one more view. It was still very windy up there.
Walking from Hopi Point to Powell Point to get the bus heading eastward back to where we began.
We took the bus us to Hopi Point 6800 feet elevation. Suppose to be the highest point. We were warned that it was extremely windy there. We got off the bus and found out for ourselves how windy it was. Tony and Kristen are pictured here shielding themselves from the wind. Tony got hit in the eye with a pine needle. Kristen complained of getting sand in her eye.
Another picture of beauty!!!!
Josh, Kristen, Tony and Aaron stopped for a pose.

I zoomed in with my camera to take this picture of guys below. There was no way I was gonna climb down there to get my picture taken.
Just breath taking!!!

The beginning of our adventure.

The best way to see the park it to take the free bus to different areas and walk around. We boarded the bus and started to see the park.

On Sunday, July 19th 2009, we finally made it to the Grand Canyon. What Beauty!!! We forgot to stop at the sign and get our picture taken. We thought we'd do it on the way out but we forgot.
We parked on the side of the road because the parking lot was full. We didn't know how to get around but we soon figured it out after finding the visitor center.