Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Artist Point, Yellowstone

The Sharp Shooters Camera Club had a field trip on February 8, 2014 to Yellowstone National Park.  We reserved a snowcoach and left from West Yellowstone, Montana on a snowy day.  The snowcoach took us along the Madison River and across the park to the Canyon area where one of the stops was at Artist Point.  The driver was worried that we wouldn't be able to see much because of the storm, but the snow eased up when we arrived at the Canyon.

Artist Point was thought to be the location where Thomas Moran created a famous painting in 1872.  It was named by park photographer F. Jay Haynes about 1883 and the name stuck, even though the painting was actually done at Moran Point.

Our view was straight down the magnificent Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone toward Lower Falls, which were about a mile away.  The wind was blowing hard, and photography was difficult with snow blowing toward the camera.

Notice the yellow color of some of the cliffs that gave the park its name.

As we zoom in closer, the Yellowstone River and Lower Falls become easier to see.

Finally, the third photo shows a closeup view of the 308 foot falls, which were partially frozen.  An inverted V of water along the left edge drops down to a huge mound of snow and ice at the base of the falls.

The trail back to our snowcoach was a snow-covered uphill walk along the canyon wall.  It was interesting to look down on the rocks and trees in the deep snow.  This tree was the only one to survive the steep cliff and snowdrifts in one area.
If you don't mind a little cold and snow, a snowcoach tour is a great way to see Yellowstone.