Saturday, September 7, 2013

Beartooth Highway

We'd been told many times that the drive over the Beartooth Highway is one of the most spectacular in the country, so we felt we couldn't leave this area till we'd done it. The shortest way to the highway involved going to Livingston and then down and across the top part of Yellowstone. We were lucky this trip to see several herds of bison.

I loved this guy, with his plump summer physique and soft, full coat.

Also well filled out from summer grazing, this handsome pronghorn showed no fear of us as he took his morning drink.

Shortly after we passed back out of the park and through Cooke City, we entered the Beartooth Highway and began our climb up to the 10,000 foot heights. I decided to take off my seatbelt and reach into the back seat for my sandwich and was startled by this awesome sight out the back window! Had I not been hungry I would have missed Pilot Peak! I love the shadow and sun effect. When we reached the actual viewpoint for this mountain, the clouds had moved and the photos didn't come out quite as well.

Charles Kuralt declared this drive to be the most beautiful in America. There may be some reading this post who remember him as a well known travel writer and TV host.  Though truly gorgeous and amazing, we have seen some places equally as beautiful. For instance I was reminded of our drive to the top of Pikes Peak in Colorado. The heights are dizzying and the vistas are awesome. Here we're looking down on a tiny road leading to a pretty lake. Though we entered and exited through Montana, most of the Beartooth Highway is in Wyoming.

I had assumed that the name "Beartooth" meant simply jagged mountains, but there is one point that is actually the bear's tooth. In this photo you can barely see a single, tooth-shaped rock slightly to the right of the snow marker.

Here it is, a better view, along with more dizzying heights!

The whole area is filled with lakes captured and held by the crevices and stone cliffs. This one is particularly beautiful.
Here you can see part of the road we traveled, way down there in the distance.

Heading down the other side of the Beartooth Pass we found a way-side stop, the Rock Creek Vista Point, with a trail leading out to more spectacular views. I liked the colorful dead tree snag in the center.

These little guys have learned to beg during the brief summer season, and are rewarded by the tourists. He is eating a potato chip. In all, our drive was 367 miles from Bozeman, round trip, a giant circle. We were out for 10 hours, and arrived home very tired and very satisfied with our day trip. The Beartooth Highway has been added to our list of the most memorable sights we have seen and experienced in our workamping years!


Cheryl Jongeneel said...

It is never boring discovering the beauty of God's creation. The scenery will be a bit different in our area, but many spectacular vistas are available. Soon we will be almost neighbors. :)

Char Hardt said...

Another gorgeous part of this beautiful country of ours.