Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Yellowstone NP (V). Mud Volcano & Yellowstone Lake

South of the Canyon, along the Southern Loop, the landscape turned into a postcard: a lazy river winding along a completely green plain full of wildlife.

The dim light of the early evening and the reflection of the sky in the mirror like water of the river created a beautiful image.

A bit further South, volcanic activity! Yellowstone is a place of contrasts!! Actually, all the area is a huge volcano which has erupted several times in history. Now, it is dormant, but geothermal activity is still very clear: boiling water in ponds, fumaroles, geysers...

The area is called Mud Volcano and it starts with something called the Sulphur Caldron: a pool of sizzling water rich in sulfur. As you can imagine, the smell is quite "intense".

Further down the road is the Mud Volcano area. The place is composed of many pools with sizzling water and smoke coming out of fumaroles.

Some animals, like this bison, come here to take in some warmth.

Water literally tries to jump off the pools! This sudden eruptions were an introduction for the geysers I would see the next day.

The land between these two pools was yellow colored. I guess partly because of sulfur, partly because of bacteria.

This is the so called Mud Volcano. The shape of it reminds of a small volcanic crater.

And this is the Dragon's Mouth Spring. From that opening, fumes come out and quite some noise is produced. It sounds like a dragon roaring and putting out some smoke.

Last general view of this place:

I continued driving South and found the beautiful lazy river again.

At some point, the river was not a river, but a lake. That was its source! One of the largest lakes in North America: Yellowstone Lake.

In the morning, in the Southern part of the park, I saw another beautiful lake: Lewis Lake.

The day ended with a picnic dinner by the lake. Quite a day of contrasts and surprises!

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