Favorite Rides & Destinations

Fall 2017

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www.FavoriteRidesAndDestinations.com | ridermagazine.com PAGE 71 FALL 2017 ISSUE 02 / VOL. 02 At the Norris Geyser Basin we stopped in hopes of seeing Steamboat Geyser shoot 300-foot jets of hot water, a random event that eluded us. We did, however, see several smaller eruptions during our 10-minute visit. We also strolled to Porcelain Basin, where steam shoots hither and yon from an expanse of mineral-crusted terrain as stark and pale as the moon. Near the park exit we waited out a traffic jam caused by the sighting of a black bear in a tree, and we stopped again at Mammoth Hot Springs, one of Yellowstone Park's most beautiful features, where about 50 hot springs bubble and drip in pastel terraces of calcium carbonate and limestone. Gardiner, outside the park's north en trance, was our lunch stop. This tiny town has an even more touristy feel than West Yellowstone. High way 89 leads out of the park via a huge stone archway built in 1903, then follows the Yellowstone River a few miles north to the 45th Parallel. Park here and follow the trail about half a mile to the hot springs-fed Boiling River, a popular soaking spot where bathing suits are required, but the pools, at least, are au naturel. Imagine our disappointment to find the river closed due to high spring runoff! There is paradise, however, and there's Paradise. We urged our bike northward on a mostly straight path with a few wide sweepers to the Paradise Valley, where the massive Absaroka Mountains loom over sagebrush foothills and Chico Hot Springs Resort, about two miles off 89. Popular landscape artist Russell Chatham once made his home here, painting the river bottom as opposed to the big, purple mountains because, he once said, he could never see himself in them. They're that imposing. Right: The famous stone arch portal at the north entrance to Yellowstone National Park at Gardiner, dedicated by Teddy Roosevelt in 1903. Left: Bald eagles perch near their nest in Yellowstone National Park.

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