Yellowstone Part 1

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA
Snake River facing Grand Teton

The airport, which probably qualified as an oversized ranch, was so small only three airlines serviced it. There were no jetways; instead, travelers were greeted by open sky, a soft breeze, the majestic Teton Mountains, and no cell service. The town of Jackson, with a population just under 10,000, was nestled in the valley of Jackson Hole, eight miles south. The size of the sign indicating the airport’s presence was about as large as a generously-sized agenda. No words, just the symbol of an airplane quietly pointing the way.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA
Forest in the Upper Geyser Basin near Old Faithful

There were blue skies, open plains, and forest as far as the eye could see. Cars, like the intermittent lost ant, occasionally sped down the highway at a leisurely pace of 55 mph. The national elk refuge and Grand Teton National Park left scant room for any roots of civilization. It was quiet, and you could think.  From Jackson to Yellowstone was 76 miles, depending on the destination within the park, but there would have hardly been enough time to soak in the splendor of the landscape, which was occasionally dotted with bison.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA
Pool in Upper Geyser Basin

Each scene was a painting, as heavily-saturated colors burst forth and created a serene masterpiece for the eyes and heart. The green of the plants, the oranges of the sulfur, the incredibly deep blues of the water; they all sang with incomparable beauty. It was a place that shouldn’t exist, but miraculously does.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA
Dry riverbed at Gros Ventre Junction

On a chilly, early morning, the sun softly kissed the rocks of a dry riverbed. The water flowed, sparkling and chiming, a few yards away. It was crisp and sharp, so clean that you could see the rocks beneath. If you closed your eyes and listened, the most brilliant symphony played as nature slowly, though not lazily, awakened.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA
Sapphire-colored water at Upper Geyser Basin

Wonder is such a sensational, singular emotion, felt in solitude, but always shared. There never seem to be words to communicate the sense of beauty, joy, and peace that envelope us as we become small and grace becomes big.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA
River at Upper Geyser Basin

And we wandered, slowly, drinking in the serenity.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s