After a couple of really big days we were slower to start today. We got on the road a bit before 11am after filling up the car again.
I started getting various bites pop up as we drove back to our hotel last night, some massive, some smaller and a few on my palm that look and feel more like blisters, none are pleasant. This morning I had more of them and am very itchy. Neither of us can work out how I got them, the bigger ones, whatever bit me would've had to bite through multiple layers of clothes. It's very odd.
First wildlife spotting of the day, prong horns just before the gate. Next some mule deer including some babies.
We checked out a few hikes, found a few new friends like a squirrel munching on pine cones. We took a walk in the forest and can confirm, yes bears do! Since we were last here they've opened up a lot more near Norris, some gorgeous lakes and a few geo thermal areas. In some places there were small hot spots along the rivers and at the lakes shoreline.
We found a couple of magnificent elk stags and their harems, some swans, geese and chipmunks.
There were a lot of people fly fishing in the various rivers, all kitted up in rubber pants etc.
We did a bit of a drive through the thermal area that old faithful is in and stopped at the fountain geyser just as it was about to go off, quite the sight! We checked out a number of side roads and some waterfalls.
Last but by no means the least sighting of the day; two separate Grizzlies! Both were a ways off over a river. The first didn't stick around long before heading back into the woods. The second far bigger one was even further off. Despite failing light Pete took off along a narrow track down the hill and along the river to try and get a pic of him. The grizzly was moving super fast and never came close enough to the river for a great shot but I think Pete got some OK ones.
We headed back to Gardiner for dinner arriving a little after 9pm, even later than last night. We would've been earlier but got stuck behind some nervous nellies who panicked and braked on every corner. As we got to Mammoth there were some rabbits frolicking around the town green.
Tomorrow we move on but we aren't going too far, just to Bozeman to stay at Howlers Inn. We are planning one more spin through the park on our way there.