Note - the haziness in the photos is due to the fires around the area.
For our first full day in Cody, we decided to drive up the Shoshone River Valley and into Yellowstone thru the East gate. Shortly out of Cody, we passed the Buffalo Bill Dam which was completed in 1910 with the primary purpose of providing irrigation water to the areas east of the lake. The dam is in a narrow canyon and is only 70’ wide at the bottom and 200’ at the top and after a 25’ extension in 1993, it is now 350’ tall. When completed at 325’ in 1910, it was the tallest dam in the world. The dam sits just around the corner to the left and seems like a perfect location in the narrow canyon.
This first shot is the dam's exit canyon and the next two are the river upstream from the lake.
It was very interesting to watch the landscape change as we went from the typical Wyoming look to rocks that reminded me of Utah and into the forested park – although there was lots of damage from fire and maybe beetles. Shortly after entering the park, we crossed Sylvan Pass and its large monolithic rock followed by Sylvan Lake.
Then we dropped down to Yellowstone Lake, drove along it’s shore for a ways and saw our only park wildlife – this fellow was standing near the lake and near a big group of people. He was laying down on the way back and I can only assume the herd had assigned him this spot for the day to entertain us tourists.
When we started back, the temperature was 66F at Yellowstone Lake, 73F at the park exit, and 86F at the campground, so it’s easy to see why the locals head for the park for a Sunday drive, much like we do in the cooler Smoky’s at home.
We were told that if we drove out the South Fork Rd. in the evening we would see wildlife so about 7:15pm we headed out and we did see a Pronghorn and several mule deer – mostly in small herds with a buck – notice the felt covered antlers and nearness to humans. The first shot was less than a mile from the campground.
Photos can be enlarged by clicking on them.
Have a great day and thanks for stopping by Almost Heaven South.
8/2/15 event date