WHERE ARE THE BEARS?: YELLOWSTONE NATIONAL PARK BLOG

Hello there! It has been longer than usual since I posted here, and I really missed writing blog posts to tell you the truth! I needed a short break, but now I’m back with a new blog post about a trip I took with friends to Yellowstone National Park. I love being in nature and hope to visit as many national parks as I can. So when my friends and I started planning a trip to Yellowstone, my excitement was shooting through the roof! Getting the chance to see Old Faithful, natural rock formations, elk, bison, and bears (or so we thought) had us all pumped. 

The Gameplan

If you read my blog posts about the Grand Canyon, you may know that when my friends and I plan a trip, we like to make it a road trip. Because of this, planning for us gets very logistical. We pulled out our maps and routed the whole thing. This trip included several stops: Seattle, Spokane, Coeur d’Alene, Missoula, Montana, Jackson Hole, Grand Tetons, and Salt Lake City (I’m not even sure if I covered them all), and we planned to accomplish this in only 3-4 days. However, this challenge is one we knew we wouldn’t have any problem overcoming. 

Pitstops

Remember my previous blog post about spending 2 hours in Seattle (if not, you can read it here)? Well, that was actually a layover for this trip! Our first stop on the road to Yellowstone was Seattle, and it was a layover I’ll never forget. 

2 Hours in Seattle

After Seattle, we boarded the smallest plane I’ve ever seen in my life and landed in Spokane, WA. We arrived pretty late, so we went straight to the hotel and went to bed. The following day, we hit up Coeur d’Alene and took some photos by the water. 

It was a chilly and rainy morning
Thew Crew!
The socks were on brand for this trip

Coeur d”Alene was lovely, but it was time to make our way to Yellowstone, so we began our 6-hour trek to the west gate of Yellowstone in Montana. We stopped in Bozeman, Idaho for chicken, Missoula, Montana for balloons, and took some photos in small towns. 

Chicken spot in Bozeman, Idaho. It was delicious!
Missoula, Montana

Yellowstone National Park – Preparing for BEARS! 

After a long stretch on the road, we finally arrived at the Yellowstone entrance. Shortly after passing the gate, Our first thought was, “IT IS FREEZING!”. We traveled in September, and we are all from Georgia. Hence, the low temperatures in Montana were startling, to say the least. So, the first thing we did was stop at a gift shop to bundle up. 

Finally Made it! Yellowstone West Gate in Montana
My friend picked up a new hat to keep her warm

We were then met with several warnings about wildlife and what to do if we encountered them. The chance of seeing bears was one of the main things we discussed while planning this trip. We even bought Bear Spray and had our eyes peeled! 

The illustration here was enough for me haha

While keeping a lookout for bears, we stopped at a few points on the way to our cabin. 

Old Faithful – Waiting for Bears…

It was starting to get late, so we began to drive to our cabin. We stayed at The Old Faithful Inn, which was a long drive from the west gate. The Old Faithful Inn is on the Wyoming side of the park and is made up of a campsite with several cabins and bathrooms and showers a short walk from your door. Breakfast and dinner are served in their main building, which is a short drive away. Because we are still in the middle of Yellowstone Park, there were reminders around letting us know to be aware of wildlife and to walk in groups at all times. Luckily, we were able to get to our cabins safely without any bear encounters! 

The drive to the cabins got pretty scary at one point. It got extremely dark, and bison were popping up on the road. I highly suggest making sure you are in before dark! 

This area leads to the restaurant and shops at Old Faithful Inn
A view of the cabins the next morning
The balloons we picked up in Missoula. Kate was celebrating visiting 50 states! Shoutout to Rachel’s Top Model pose in the back and Jazmin’s passion in photography.
Another group selfie

The next morning, we woke up early to see the Old Faithful! Old Faithful is a famous geyser in Wyoming and one of the most popular attractions at Yellowstone. The geothermal feature erupts around every 45 minutes to 2 hours. Old Faithful was a short drive from our cabin, and we wanted to beat the crowd so we could get some photos. Tip: Get there early and be patient while waiting for it to erupt! The park provides both outdoor and indoor seating for you while you wait. 

We made a new friend. He fits right in doesn’t he?
The balloons wanted in
Put this on a postcard!
Everyone getting their best shot lol
View of Old Faithful from inside
You know I’m going to find the crystals everywhere I go

Well, We Saw Snow – But NO BEARS.

After Old Faithful, and still…no bears…we continued our trek through the park. 

We couldn’t see a thing!
We didn’t really get the best view as it was extremely foggy this day
We saw tons of bison

While driving through the rest of the Wyoming side of Yellowstone, it began to snow! Again, we are from Georgia, and it was September, so the snow was exciting for us! We decided to pull over and have some fun…while still looking out for bears. 

I got a burst of energy out of no where
And here we go…
Those few months of ballet lessons really paying off
Another group selfie!

Ok…so you can probably tell by this point we really want to see a bear! 

Not bear tracks…
Overall we all felt at peace here

We had so much fun at Yellowstone, but honestly, we were a little disappointed we didn’t see bears! We saw bison, elk, goats, some of everything but NO BEARS! I still see many photos of bear sightings and encounters at Yellowstone. I’m starting to believe they were photoshopped in. Don’t get me wrong, I am very grateful we didn’t have any dangerous encounters, but geesh a sighting would have been nice. 

On to the Next Stop

It was time to leave Yellowstone and explore the rest of Wyoming. We still had Jackson Hole, Gand Tetons, and Salt Lake City planned! I have a lot to cover for you from these stops, so I will stop this blog post right here. Of course, it wouldn’t be my blog if I didn’t leave you with a cliffhanger, so be sure to subscribe to this blog so you don’t miss part 2 of this trip! 

XO – Kat

3 thoughts on “WHERE ARE THE BEARS?: YELLOWSTONE NATIONAL PARK BLOG

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