Wednesday, August 31, 2011

West Yellowstone, Montana and Island Park, Idaho

For ten days we'll be at Island Park, Idaho, just two states away from Yellowstone National Park--Montana and Wyoming.  Wayne visited the park many years ago; I've never been.  The weather is quite warm in the daytime but the temperature drops quickly with the sun. 

Driving here from Missoula, we stopped overnight at Ennis, Montana then arrived at Red Rock RV Park in Island Park early the next afternoon. 

Our first campsite at Red Rock was cramped and in a very dusty part of the park and we planned to leave after the third night, but instead, we relocated to a larger, grassier space within the campground.  

We are anxiously awaiting the arrival of our friends from Yuma, Marcella and Landon and their beagle, BJ.

Red Rock RV Park  is five miles off Highway 20. It's quiet and dark here at night. All around us is grazing land for fat, happy cattle and good looking horses. The few homes in this area are made of logs.  Moose, bear and wolves have been seen in the area, I'm told.  One section of Red Rock Road travels through pastureland that is completely unfenced. Cows wander across the road at will!
The wood fence surrounds the campground and separates it from the vast grassland.
Henry's Lake is 1/2 mile across the field.
The dirt road seen here takes the traveler to Henry's Lake,just over the rise.

Our first full day was spent exploring the town of West Yellowstone, Montana; we didn't go into the national park at all.
Downtown West Yellowstone

Here at the Grizzly Discovery Center I ran into this woman with her Maltese.

I don't even remember her name but her Malatese is just 8 months old and already 6 pounds!

Wildflowers growing in a parking lot.

More wildflowers

In West Yellowstone, we "whiled away" the afternoon eating blizzards at Dairy Queen and browsing for campgrounds and historical buildings.  We took an hour or so to tour the old Union Pacific Railroad Station. This town was created as a direct result of the Union Pacific Railroad. 

A fascinating fact to me is that in 1905 the U.S. Forest Service "borrowed" the shape of the Union Pacific Railroad shield for it's own logo.  Funny, I never noticed that until I read it here today.
West Yellowstone-Oregon Shortline Terminus
The construction and dedication of this pylon in 1910 marked the completion of the railroad terminus and the beginning of  development by Union Pacific Railroad for tourist accommodation for park access.

These water wagons rolled along the streets, dripping water to keep the dust down.
Sounds like a good idea for some campgrounds I've seen.

The train loading side of the depot.

We're parked on the side of the depot.
That's Wayne with the bird legs.

In early afternoon, we stopped for McDonalds and I couldn't resist this photo of Lexie watching Pop eat french fries.  She never eats people food, but she sure enjoyed watching today.

In the parking lot at McDonalds, I saw the biggest, ugliest black bird in the world.
He was the size of a chicken! Horrors.

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