19 In Animals + Wildlife/ Hiking + The Outdoors/ Montana/ Travel/ Wyoming

Road Trip to Alaska Part One

This summer my dad and I went on a three week road trip to Alaska from Missouri making lots of stops along the way!  It was such a spectacular trip.  I’m wanting to share it with you in four parts touching on some of my favorite things.

We took a long way up through Yellowstone and Glacier NP in Montana.  The ride to Yellowstone was so beautiful because the terrain changed every hour or so to something completely different.

We stopped at the Grand Tetons and did the “Hidden Falls Trail” which was only about 5 miles.  We were really excited because we love waterfalls, but we were then VERY disappointed when we finally reached the Hidden Falls.  We thought that Hidden Falls meant these gorgeous falls hidden up in the mountains, but no, hidden falls means you literally cannot see these falls!  So that part of it was pretty disappointing, but the views of Jenny Lake are beautiful from this trail, and the hike itself was really pretty.  Be sure to bring plenty of water, though, and take altitude changes into consideration when comparing it to 5 mile hike you do back home.

Jenny Lake

Jenny Lake

Jenny Lake

Jenny Lake

Kayakers on Jenny Lake

Kayakers on Jenny Lake

The Hidden Falls

The Hidden Falls

The Sign at the Grand Tetons Sign With the Tetons in the Background

The Sign at the Grand Tetons Sign With the Tetons in the Background

Yellowstone is amazing.  I had never been there before and was so thrilled with it!  One of the coolest things about it is that there is so much to do and see there.  There is something for everyone.  There are easy hikes, harder hikes, wildlife, geysers, canyons, waterfalls, rivers, lakes, fishing… You name it, they’ve got it!  You could spend a week there, no problem!

The Black Pool

The Black Pool

We were there peak time (third week of July) and although some of the hot spots were busy, it wasn’t completely overwhelming where you couldn’t enjoy the things you’re looking at.  My favorite of the little pull-outs was the West Thumb Geyser Basin.  It was so beautiful!  All of these tiny pools with amazing shades of the most vivd turquoise, green, blue and orange.  Plus, you were right off of Yellowstone Lake which made for a spectacular view.

The Big Cone

The Big Cone

Me at the Mud Volcano

Me at the Mud Volcano

A Giant Herd of Buffalo in the Prarie

A Giant Herd of Buffalo in the Prarie

The Prairie and River

The Prairie and River

The Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone

The Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone

A close second was the Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone.  The hikes to the waterfalls are most definitely worth it, especially the Lower Falls because it offers a cool view of the Upper Falls.

Old Faithful

Old Faithful

Of course, you can’t go to Yellowstone without seeing Old Faithful. She’s still pretty accurately timed and you can get a really spectacular view of this iconic geyser from the lodge nearby.

Sunset over Yellowstone Lake

Sunset over Yellowstone Lake

Grizzly

Grizzly

The very best thing to happen at Yellowstone, though, was when a mama bear and her two cubs came up from this valley, up the hillside and across the road,  and literally 2 feet away from me with only our car window between us.  We stood outside for a long time, but once they got close enough, we jumped back in our car.  The mom was so HUGE!  The babies were so adorable and the played together.  They walked over and ate these white flowers.  It was one of the most amazing moments of my life.

Grizzly

Grizzly

Grizzly

Grizzly

Grizzly

Grizzly

Grizzly

Grizzly

Grizzly Cubs

Grizzly Cubs

Grizzly Cubs

Grizzly Cubs

Grizzly Cubs

Grizzly Cubs

Grizzly and Her Cub

Grizzly and Her Cub

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Mammoth Hot Springs

Mammoth Hot Springs

On our way to Montana, we stopped off at Mammoth Hot Springs. In many of the photos of Yellowstone there are a lot of pictures of these formations show all the bright oranges, reds and yellows. However, when we got there it was mostly that chalky, grey color you can see to the side of the photos. Although it’s still beautiful, it was a bit misleading.

Mammoth

Mammoth

Goose Lake in Glacier NP

Goose Lake in Glacier NP

After we left Yellowstone, we made a very, very quick run to Glacier National Park.  It was a gorgeous park, but I didn’t get to see much of it.  I’d love to go back some time.  We did a couple of short hikes to a couple of waterfalls, and we also drove up to Logan’s Pass, and walked around up there.  We saw our first black bear of our trip up there.  It was the prettiest one too!  It was such a beautiful park and I can’t wait to go back to actually get to know it.

Driving Up to Logan's Pass

Driving Up to Logan’s Pass

On Top of Logan's Pass

On Top of Logan’s Pass

More Logan's Pass

More Logan’s Pass

Glacier NP

Glacier NP

Waterfall in Glacier NP

Waterfall in Glacier NP

Another View of Goose Lake

Another View of Goose Lake

Goose Lake

Goose Lake

Black Bear in Glacier NP

Black Bear in Glacier NP

I’m very glad that we were able to make some really beautiful stops and even more beautiful memories together on the way to Alaska. It was definitely an epic start to a seriously epic road trip! 

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19 Comments

  • Reply
    Little Fingers
    June 17, 2011 at 5:15 pm

    I visited Yellowstone and Grand Teton’s last year..I am yet to write abt that trip in my blog ..Your pictures are so beautiful..Which camera do you use?

    • Reply
      ashleypaige4
      June 17, 2011 at 5:19 pm

      Thank you so much! I use a Canon T1I, and a lomography fisheye 35mm camera. I can’t wait to read about your trip!

      • Reply
        Little Fingers
        June 17, 2011 at 5:30 pm

        I recently upgraded to Canon T2i, till then I had canon powershot S5, I so wish I had upgraded earlier..anyways there is always tomorrow..

        • Reply
          ashleypaige4
          June 17, 2011 at 5:33 pm

          My mom has the T2I, it was just a bit too expensive for a broke student 🙂 It’s a great camera though! You should check out a toy camera sometime! I love them! I also have a Holga and am getting ready to purchase another toy camera before I go to Italy in the fall- They take interesting pictures that really surprise you!

  • Reply
    Wanderlust Wednesday- Movies That Inspire Travel Pt. 2 « fortheloveofwanderlust
    July 6, 2011 at 3:05 pm

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  • Reply
    Wanderlust Wednesday- The ABC’s of Travel « For the Love of Wanderlust
    April 12, 2012 at 9:47 am

    […] When my dad and I were in Yellowstone National Park and we were 2 feet away from a mama grizzly and her two cubs!  […]

  • Reply
    Postcards from the National Parks « For the Love of Wanderlust
    May 23, 2012 at 10:53 pm

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    September 19, 2012 at 7:02 am

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  • Reply
    Somewhere Saturday- Logan’s Pass, Glacier National Park | For the Love of Wanderlust
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    Wanderlust Wednesday- The ABC’s of Travel | For the Love of Wanderlust
    August 25, 2014 at 5:21 pm

    […] When my dad and I were in Yellowstone National Park and we were 2 feet away from a mama grizzly and her two cubs!  […]

  • Reply
    Wanderlust Wednesday: Postcards from the National Parks | For the Love of Wanderlust
    August 28, 2014 at 7:54 am

    […] Glacier National Park                                Denali National Park […]

  • Reply
    Yellowstone National Park | For the Love of Wanderlust
    August 30, 2014 at 2:26 pm

    […] way home we stopped at Yellowstone National Park for the day.  My dad has been a few times, and I had been once before, but Cory had never been.  Again, we were on a bit of a time crunch, so we didn’t really do […]

  • Reply
    Wanderlust Wednesday- Postcard From Glacier National Park, Montana | For the Love of Wanderlust
    August 30, 2014 at 2:57 pm

    […] about their trips.  😀  Besides loving the note from my grandparents it’s making me remember my trip to Glacier National Park, so below the postcard there are a few photos from my trip.  I hope you […]

  • Reply
    Somewhere Saturday- Fairbanks, Alaska
    October 20, 2014 at 6:26 pm

    […] my dad and I drove to Alaska, we had really amazing luck with animal sightings. The only thing we didn’t see was a bull moose. However, it was just as magical to see these […]

  • Reply
    « International Mountain Day » - For the Love of Wanderlust
    December 11, 2014 at 5:08 pm

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  • Reply
    Jenny Lake - Grand Tetons National Park
    December 13, 2014 at 10:34 am

    […] Grand Tetons National Park was the first stop of so, so many on my road trip to Alaska with my dad. We did this beautiful hike around Jenny Lake and up into a mountain to Hidden Falls. It wasn’t a beautiful waterfall because it was just that, hidden. But walking alongside the lake was absolutely stunning! I loved seeing families kayaking together, looking out for bears on my first bear-aware hike, and watching the water glisten as the sun moved slowly across the sky. I would love to get back to Wyoming and get on some new trails through these mountains. […]

  • Reply
    Somewhere Saturday- Old Faithful- For the Love of Wanderlust
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