Sunrise over Lower Red Rock Lake

Sunrise over Lower Red Rock Lake
Sunrise over Lower Red Rock Lake

Sunday, November 1, 2015

Spa Time in Yellowstone

It's hard to get a shower in Yellowstone National Park. There are NO showers at the park campgrounds and you have to drive a long way to pay to take a shower.

Laurel, my last friend to meet me at Yellowstone, knew there was a place where people were allowed to soak in warm to hot water. We found it was at the Boiling River where it flows into the Gardiner River.  Boiling River is a big hot spring that runs a very short distance before it joins the Gardner River, north of Mammoth.  The spring enters the river from river left, and then mixes with the very cold river water,  so you can choose among temperatures that will burn to ones that will freeze.  Most of the people just find a place that feels good and then just sit and soak. And even in those spots, it sometimes gets too hot or too cold as the streams swirl together.

We took the short hike to make sure we were where Laurel expected to go swimming one morning.  The mornings were cool - we had ice on our tents and car - so Boiling River was making a lot of steam.


Junction of Boiling River and Garner River
 We ended up going to soak three times. We enjoyed the hot soaks and also visiting with other people there.   I now have a new Facebook friend I met there. And of course, the views were fabulous. I took my camera with me the time we went late in the day and had pretty light.


There are beautiful views from the trail along the Gardner River

Looking upstream towards Boiling River - it's not yet in view 

Another trail view

Another Gardner River view

Bathers just below the Boiling River  - it is coming in from the right side in several places

Longer view

Boiling River comes out of here and goes down a short channel before joining the Gardner River

Looking downstream on the Boiling River

One of fingers of Boiling River entering the Gardner River

The Boiling River 
Laurel enjoying the soak
After I put my camera in my bag and went into the water, a cow elk and her baby waded across the Gardner River just upstream of the bathers.  She didn't seem to be at all concerned about us.

All in all I had a few great times, and I ended up with a much less offending smell.

 Be sure to bring your swimsuit and enjoy this wonderful experience when you go to Yellowstone. For more information on this swimming spot, click here.

On the personal front, I'm visiting a friend in Hammond, Louisiana before setting off for several more days of travel, adventures and visiting friends, including one that I'll meet for the first time in real life but who has been a friend I met in Flickr.  We share a passion for gardening and paddling and will do a paddle together.