Its natural magnificence inspired the United States Congress to establish Yellowstone as the world's first national park in 1872. Kathy and I were so thrilled by the area that we decided to return for an extra day after completing our tour of US 191. There's so much to see, without even venturing off the beaten path, that a single day is simply not enough. In addition to the countless vistas overlooking deep canyons and rushing rivers, there are the geologic oddities that conscientious tourists can't ignore. Numerous geysers, including Old Faithful, gurgling mudpots, steam-spewing fumaroles, and other natural anomalies pepper the landscape.
When traveling among these attractions, be sure to keep your eyes peeled, because you never know which specimens of wildlife may cross your path. At one point, Kathy asked me if buffalo are dangerous—a perfectly valid question considering one of them had chosen that moment to block the road, and the space he'd left for us to pass by amounted to nothing more than my arm's length. Making ourselves as small as possible, we managed to sneak by. We also saw moose, elk, coyote, antelope, and birds too numerous to count. And although we didn't see any, grizzly and black bears do frequent the roadside.
A range of services is available throughout the parklands, so it's not necessary to leave them to find snacks or dinner. Attractive picnic spots are situated conveniently and in ample numbers. Yellowstone National Park is truly an inspirational destination and no trip to this part of the country should be considered complete without taking a nice slow cruise through it.