Yellowstone National Park, Montana
Not surprising, but seeing National Parks has never really been big on my travel bucket list. I am not a great camper and a lazy hiker so I am basically terrible at pretty much everything that has to do with being an outdoorsy kind of person.
So entering Yellowstone Park I wasn’t expecting much, until I passed that big guy less than 10 metres in, he was just walking down the highway so I slowed down to snap a photo. I wasn’t sure if bison are aggressive but he was bigger than my car so I wasn’t about to take a chance.
But I hadn’t stepped out from the shadow of danger, in fact as long as I was in my car I was at risk – from other drivers. Like me, no one expected for the wildlife to be as near as it was and so every time a driver saw some kind of nature, any kind of animal, they slammed on the brakes.
After nearly rear-ending multiple drivers I realized it was best to leave a ten car gap between us. Driving in Yellowstone has no rules, some people are polite and pull over to the side of the road if they want to get out in take a photo, but most people just slam on their brakes, get out of the car while it is still on the road, take a few photos and get back in.
Sarcasm aside, it is difficult to complain about this place. After my encounter with the first bison I came across fields of them. I also saw a number of other animals.
I also realized just how massive Yellowstone Park really is, there was no cell phone reception the entire time and while I heard there are currently four forest fires, the only evidence was a smokey sky as I could not see or hear anything. I also learned that if humans cause the forest fires they will fight it but they leave the fires caused by nature.
My biggest regret is that I was only driving through the park, I really wish I had realized how amazing it would be so I could have planned a night or two here.
Oh well, I guess there is always “next time”.