Yellowstone: Mammoth Hot Springs area

This is it, my final post from Yellowstone.  The area around Mammoth Hot Springs is awesome once you get a few steps away from the main attraction (the springs, duh).  Even right around our cabins the wildlife was decent. 

Black-billed Magpie

 Uinta ground squirrel

 House Wren buildling a nest 

There's a cool trail that starts just behind the cabins we stayed in, plus an old dirt stagecoach road called Old Gardiner Road.  They close the road after rain, so it was closed the whole time we were there.  Which made it a great walking trail...

I loved this road and explored it a few different times by myself, rarely seeing other people.  The scenery was spectacular and the wildlife top notch.

Prairie Falcon

 Mountain Bluebirds

 Elk family

 Western Wood-Pewee

 Western Tanager

Northern Flickers

 Green-tailed Towhee


Rock Wren
So I think you can see why I liked this road so much.  It was one of the few places that actually felt like how Yellowstone, in my mind, is supposed to feel:  quiet, wild, beautiful...all that good stuff.

My brother and I braved the crowds one afternoon to actually visit the hot springs and walk all the boardwalks.

Killdeer kids

So that's it for Yellowstone!  I left with a lot of mixed feelings about the park.  Love the wildlife, the scenery, the thermal features, all that.  Hate the people, the congestion, all the cars and buses and RV's... If I ever go back it will have to be in the winter or only visiting backcountry trails.  Anything but the main roads and attractions. 

But anyway.  It was a good trip and I'm glad I went and got to spend time with my brother and his family.  Good times!