Our next big stop was at Yellowstone and Grand Teton National Parks. I’d visited Yellowstone for the first time nearly 10 years ago and absolutely loved it. I was really looking forward to sharing with with DB and the Bear. Of course, trying to do that on the 5th of July was probably not the best idea, but we worked with our dealt hand just the same. We entered the park through the West entrance and headed up to Mammoth Hot Springs. Poor Bear was still feeling under the weather, but by the time we hit the Hot Springs Visitor Center he seemed in better spirits and we thought we’d grab lunch and take a walk on the boardwalk. Naturally, as soon as we put in our food order the fire alarm in the restaurant went off. It seemed like DB and I were the first ones to stand up and realize that we should probably get out of there, but soon everyone followed suit to a portico across the way. While we waited for the alarm to be cleared by the fire marshall a hail storm rolled up. The Bear thought it was awesome, of course. Unfortunately, it became evident that neither the fire alarm or the rains were going anywhere so when it let up a bit we hightailed it back to the car and continued south skipped Old Faithful and heading straight into Grand Teton.
After a long and stressful day sitting in wildlife jams and dealing with terrible drivers, we were relieved to take in the quiet of the Tetons, majestic against the receding storm clouds. We hardly saw anyone on the roads and had a quiet drive down to the Hostel in Jackson Hole where we spent the night. The following morning we did a quick visit back into the park and then continued on our way.
It can be tough traveling with a toddler on a good day. Traveling with a sick toddler brings its own set of challenges. DB and I were both itching to bust out the Osprey and take the Bear into the parks to see and experience the environment around us, but it wasn’t meant to be. At least now we have a better idea of the places we want to revisit when he’s a bit older. We agreed before we left that this trip was more of an overview to get our feet wet. We knew we wouldn’t be able to spend the amount of time in the parks that we wanted to, but we figured car hiking was better than no visit at all, and we were right. These are beautiful and majestic places that everyone should have a chance to see, no matter how briefly.