First and foremost, I'd like to say that Brian is in his element out here! From all that I've learned about the data collection he's doing, it's grueling work; I admire his passion and dedication.
Above is the "Ritz Carlton" of Yellowstone. Relative to camping in the wild, that's exactly how it feels. Protection from the elements, hot showers and internet make for a relaxing break for Brian and his team between bouts in the wilderness.
Saturday night, we camped at Lizard Creek Campground in Grand Teton National Park. A short stroll to Jackson Lake provided Flynn refreshing relief from the hot-box which has become his home in the back of the car. After setting up camp, we went off to explore the park witnessing multiple black bears munching on berries, beautiful views of the Tetons and a rare sighting of a student I taught in first grade 5 years ago! Then...the rains came.
Unknowingly, we sealed our fate by loading all the sleeping gear inside the tent before we left to explore for the day...no rain fly. One thing I now understand; always be prepared for massive afternoon rain showers out here. It soon became apparent this storm wasn't letting up so, on the way back to camp, we fled straight for the nearest general store. Together we figured this was nothing a good tarp and rope couldn't solve. On the contrary, we found our tent flooded and the sleeping bags, pads and pillows previously placed inside floating in a pool of water. Quickly, we reviewed our options and decided to go with innovation. In attempt to salvage our camping experience, we loaded all the gear into the car and cooked the heater for a good hour and a half. Next, we poured out the tent and placed it strategically on top of Cecilia whose moon roof successfully debuted as a convection heater! All in all, we feel proud to have made lemonade out of lemons that day!!
Strikingly similar to the photo we have from rainy Monteverde, Brian and I capture the light and hope in our faces at the prospect of salvaging what otherwise would've been grounds for heading to the nearest hotel. That's just the thing though...there wasn't a nearest hotel.
I am thankful Brian has found something he loves to do and am grateful for the time we got to spend exploring together! I'm also thankful for the people who had the foresight to create Yellowstone National Park to begin with...
- 2,219,789 acres (Larger than Rhode Island and Delaware combined)