We had decided to go in to the park again - there is just too much to see there.
Miles and I, with Lucy - who fell asleep, took a small trek out to the Steamboat Geyser. Steamboat is the largest in the world, yet its' eruptions are sporadic and unpredictable. We got there and it was going off - small spurts, yet very cool and still impressive. It did a few more spurts every few minutes. It was fun checking it out with Miles; he was pretty excited to have seen it erupt, even if just a little bit.
We next stopped at the Canyon Visitor Center. We had the kids turn in their Junior Ranger activity sheets they had all worked on. The Ranger was absolutely fantastic. He took probably 10 minutes talking to the kids, going over their work, asking them questions, etc. He focused solely on them and their stuff. It was so perfect. He then presented them each with their patches:
We then drove through Hayden Valley which is known for bison-seeing. We did see plenty of bison - not tons as in years past, but enough. And they were pretty close, too, and so the kids were really excited about that. Yellowstone Lake is huge and beautiful.
It was a long day - we got home around 6:30. But everyone did okay. Erin had prepared dinner and so that was nice. Erin and Chuck went to West Yellowstone to the Playmill and had a fun time watching a play. Ben went out with the boys on the tree-house and tried to look at the stars, but perhaps it wasn't dark enough? He was out there from 9:15-9:45 with them (I was not out there with them because I had had enough of the little guys. . .). Instead of stars, though, they did see lots of little bats. Glad I wasn't out there!
Friday morning we packed our bags and cleaned up while the kids played outside. There were lots of dirt-bombs and the such and so the kids were banned from coming back inside. It worked out perfectly for them and us (potty-breaks apparently where taken from atop the tree-house, ahem). We had a dandy of a drive back and only stopped for lunch - but not even getting out. We made good time. That evening our whole family went to the pool and had a great swimming time.
I hope we get back up to Yellowstone before another 6 years pass. . .