DAY FIFTY-FIVE: I have some catching up to do, because we've been in a world where there is no internet. Yellowstone National Park is blessedly free of both internet and cell phone access. Yellowstone is famous for its geysers, mud pots, fumaroles, canyons, and wildlife like bison, bears and such, but we go there primarily for the wildflowers. We did see a lot of bison and Ellen caught a glimpse of a grizzly bear, but we identified over 70 kinds of wildflowers. The profusion of wildflowers in an alpine meadow is really something to see, and hard to capture in its overwhelming beauty. Here is a little glimpse:
WILDFLOWERS IN YELLOWSTONE PARK
We stayed in a cabin at Roosevelt Lodge, our favorite place, which is sort of out-of-the way in the park.
We had lovely hikes, like one up to Trout Lake, where we saw scores of spawning trout in the stream running into the lake.
Wednesday we drove up over the Beartooth Pass, an incredible drive, where there's still a lot of snow, beautiful wildflowers and magnificent views, and on to Red Lodge, MT.
BEARTOOTH HIGHWAY: SNOW, MARSH MARIGOLDS AND VIEW
Then we went across Montana to Glendive, MT and on to Beach, ND, just over the line from Montana, where we spent the night Wednesday, and had one of our "evening walks in a strange town." We love exploring a new place and imagining living there. Thursday morning we went on a few miles to Theodore Roosevelt National Park, ND, another very special place, sort of like the Badlands, but different too, and with several "prairie dog towns" which are another sight to behold! The grandkids would love them! The park is, in a way, a monument to the important role Theodore Roosevelt played in the creation of national parks and monuments.
We went on from there to Lemmon, SD, the hometown of Kathleen Norris, author of Dakota, Cloister Walk, Amazing Grace, and other books I have enjoyed. We read parts of Dakota; A Spiritual Geography as we drove. We had a little supper in Lemmon and then had a long drive yesterday evening to Aberdeen, SD, where we spent the night and where I am writing now - in a very fancy suite which we got because we made a reservation through Hotel.com but the Super 8 in Aberdeen didn't have the room Hotel.com sold us, so they upgraded us to this suite at the same price. This created a bit of anxiety last night because we got a text message on the cell phone saying there "was an issue with our reservation," and that it was urgent that we call a number. But we kept going in and out of cell phone access and we worried whether maybe we wouldn't have a room - it was getting on toward 11 p.m. at this point, so we had a right to worry! We finally reached the number and found that they just wanted to tell us we had an upgraded room! Now how "urgent" was that? So here we are! Today we'll go on to the twin cities in MN - maybe we'll get to see our friend Arleene Sweet. Then on to Bartlett, IL Saturday, and see how my brother is doing. We're pretty close to 9,000 miles at this point.