Lifetime of Dreaming, Years of wishing to get there, one year of planning…
And six months before we almost cancelled…
As I have said before, as one trip ends the planning for another begins. And so shortly after we arrived home summer 2014 from South Carolina, excited that the following summer was my vacation pick, I got online to book lodging at Yellowstone. However for a mix of reasons (not lodging – oh I had amazing lodging booked in the park) the trip planning was just not working out, airfare was ridiculously high and then the length of the trip had to be shortened ….
And just as I was about to cancel and begin a search for a closer vacation destination, my husband offered the opportunity for my daughter and I to travel an additional week on our own. .. I guess I paused for a minute (?)…The original planning was scrapped and new lodging was found (I assure you although not easy it is possible!)
We decided to equally split the time between the two parks (highly recommend) spending our time in luxury at one and simpler accommodations at the next. Furthermore because of my love of the outdoors and of learning, my daughter and I decided to join a program to further enrich our time in Yellowstone (and that it did… another post on this at another time…)
So on the morning of Aug 15, when the sun had yet to rise, I took my husband to the Jackson Hole airport and we said our goodbyes. At that moment I was feeling overwhelmed and saddened … It had been years since I had done an extended adventure without him and I wished he was coming along to experience this journey. I stopped in town to load up on supplies, packed up our bags, said goodbyes to the valet as he pulled up our car, the bellman that retrieved & loaded our luggage, and the front desk agent who checked us out. We turned off the television and connected one last time to the internet… And at that moment I knew we were ready to leave this behind … and northward we went for our week-long adventure into Yellowstone.
My best advice: I had read early on one post on Tripadvisor suggesting that in Yellowstone you cannot over plan. It is nature. And it is unpredictable. And how true that was. Bison can stop traffic (this happened to us several times). Parking lots will get full (twice we circled for a spot and once we just skipped and moved on). And weather can turn very quickly and require seeking shelter (and yes this really happened to us). And so we had far less of a plan of what we would do the days prior and following our program. We knew where were sleeping and would let the rest fall in place. We did not see everything but of the areas we did see we explored every part of it, read almost every educational sign, and took tons of pictures. ….