Wednesday, July 2, 2008

Yellowstone


Today I biked 50 miles into Yellowstone, crossing the continental divide twice at 8,261 feet and 8,391 feet. The new back tire stayed on the rim and tube held air which is always good news when descending from the divide at 30-35 mph.

We’re staying at Grant Village. The aroma of pine trees is everywhere. When we go to bed tonight I think we’ll have a very nice pine rest.

We were last here in 1995, seven years after the 1988 forest fires. In 1995 the ground still looked barren. The lodge pole pines were already growing then but you really couldn’t see them. Now almost all the burned forest is thickly covered with lodge pole pine trees from 4 to 12 feet tall. It’s amazing how the forest reseeded itself and is growing vigorously. I've attached a few pictures from Yellowstone.

In addition to the bluebird, today I saw an osprey in the Madison River. It was floating downstream with its wings spread. Every so often it would make a mighty attempt to fly, powerfully beating its’ wings against the water. Each time its’ body cleared the water, but not its’ feet. It floated past me so I quickly turned around and biked back downhill to learn the outcome of this dilemma. The osprey then changed its’ plans. It flopped around until it faced upstream then it again attempted lift off. This time it was quickly successful, pulling itself out of the water along with the trout it had been holding in its’ talons the entire time. The bird was clearly water logged. It slowly flew just above the river with water dripping from its’ wings. Then it veered over the highway, gaining altitude. Finally it turned back downstream, flying past me to some landing place where it could enjoy its hard fought catch.

3 comments:

Me said...

The story of the osprey is cool - it is the sort of thing I would love to see.

Mulberry said...

Duh . . . Loved the pun. Have I missed many others?

Anonymous said...

I so enjoy the photos - I can't wait to see all the ones that didn't get posted. You are in my prayers for safety and good weather, it sounds like God is answering both.

Do you catch yourself singing "O Beautiful for Spacious Skies, for amber waves of grain, etc."

God Bless, Rosa