American West Adventure – Day 5


We slept in Friday morning to catch up from the long days and nights so far. Then we headed South to the Lake area. First we passed over the Fishing Bridge over the Yellowstone River, which was built in 1937. Beautiful views to the North and South. It was early AM and we wouldn’t be able to check Lake Yellowstone Hotel yet, so we headed to the marina to see if we could get out on the water. All the rowboats were out for rental already so we took a boat cruise around Yellowstone Lake with a park ranger from the National Parks Service. We found out that a large portion of the lake is over a dormant volcano and there is a lot of thermal activity down below. The rest of the lake is quite cold.

Stevenson Island

Stevenson Island

We then came upon Stevenson Island, which has an interesting history. A man named E.C. Walker built a raft in the early 20th century and brought wildlife to this small island. He then would charge visitors to Yellowstone $1 to take them out on the raft to see the animals. He would then take a photo of them and say they owed him $1 additional for the pic. Eventually the powers-that-be in the park kicked him out. That was one reason, it seems he was also having crazy parties and had lots of women. They never bothered to take his boat off the short of the island and it remained until it was hit by lightning and most of it burned up.3 at Lake

We went out to the general store grill (not bad) for some cheeseburgers and then went to explore Mud Volcanoes. We saw boiling mud and heard all kinds of bubbling sounds under the earth. Bison roam freely and one had stationed itself right in front of one and a crowd gathered to check him out. Some parents are really dumb; one kid was just a couple of feet from the Bison while he was started to get irritated; growling and shaking its head. Duh.

Sofia checking her loose tooth at lunchtime

Sofia checking her loose tooth at lunchtime

Bison guarding the mud volcano

Bison guarding the mud volcano


All Sofia kept saying at the mud volcanos was “Daddy it’s really cool and awesome but it smells so bad I can’t believe it”



We went to check into Lake Yellowstone Hotel but were too early. After taking some photos of the Lake, we went to Lehardy Rapids off the Grand Loop Road and took a walk along the river. Brandon was being annoying to Sofia (and me) so I held his arms and gave her some free shots at him. It was awesome and long overdue 🙂

Yellowstone Lake

Yellowstone Lake

fight fight

which way

It was very buggy and at one point on this little bridge Brandon started dancing like a fool to get the flies off. He realized after a bit that a family was stopped on the bridge waiting to cross and watching him…and that I was videoing the whole things. I will try to upload/embed the video.

We asked for a good local trail when we checked into the hotel and headed out to the Natural Bridge Trail. It’s 3 miles and not too rough for Sofia. The natural bridge is truly amazing and we took the steps up and around it and then finished the loop. Sofia wasn’t tired at all because it was mostly flat and at the end was asking to keep hiking.

From Sofia: On the hike I told Daddy and Brandon I wanted to have 5 kids when I get older and I want to adopt 8 more. So 13 kids.  I talked about what I was going to name them and Brandon said if he has any girls he will give them to me and he will just keep the boys. Besides being a baby doctor, a teacher and a park ranger when I get older I will home school my babies and Brandon’s girl babies.
Natural Bridge

Natural Bridge

Later that night we were crossing the Fishing Bridge again and we saw a deer off the road. This was becoming quite common but we decided to get out and take some pics and get closer. There were many other people there as well and Sofia and Brandon were using their binoculars. I got real close and the deer didn’t mind, but after a few minutes it started taking off. I didn’t understand until I turned around and Sofia was next to me, with her hands on her head shaped like antlers and she was acting like a hyper deer, she says it was to make friends with the deer. It’s ok, just a few minutes before this we had gotten up real close to a buck that was chilling out and eating some grass.
Road Trip songs of the day:
Like is a Highway – Tom Cochrane
Wiser Time – Black Crowes
Country Road – Jack Johnson (for Sofia.  I have video of her dancing to this when she was 3)
Brandon wanted hot chocolate but forgot it’s name. Finally he said ‘like chocolate milk, but…… hotter’. Yep, he’s my son.
deer 3-2
deer 2

6 thoughts on “American West Adventure – Day 5

  1. I love love love reading this blog…memories for a lifetime! Brandon & Sofia, you are 2 amazing kids and I hope you write a book about your incredible summer vacation with your dad (who is also amazing)! If you write a book for kids (with your own drawings) I promise to buy a copy for my own kids to read 🙂

  2. Looks like you are making life time memories. What an amazing trip and experience for you all. Brandon and Sophia you have an amazing Daddy!! And the blog. What a great way to remember the little things years from now. Enjoy and stay safe!!

  3. Sounds like another great day for the Traveling Frieds! I love all the beautiful pictures and the interesting stories.

  4. Great blog – love the adventure and sharing and experiencing it with your children – that is very cool and many people could learn a lot from you. Who needs computers and I-phones when we have the great outdoors! Well done to you all.

  5. Pingback: Long Island Greenbelt Trail: First Blaze | 1 Quest 2 the Next

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