Saturday, March 22, 2008

Yellowstone For The Bicyclists

But A Wonderful Experience
.. The first bicycle tour of Yellowstone National Park took place in 1883, when three members of the Laramie, Wyoming, Bicycle Club came to visit.
.. In June of the following year W.O. Owen wrote a piece for "OUTING."
To three members of the Laramie Bicycle Club — C. S. Greenbaum, W. K. Sinclair and W. O. Owen — belongs the honor of having made the first wheel tour of the Yellowstone National Park, and, having been appointed historian on this memorable trip, it falls to my lot to set down the incidents of the journey for the readers of Outing. There are two routes open to residents of Wyoming; one lies by way of Bozeman, Mon., the other via Beaver CaƱon, Idaho. (HTML - PDF)
.. Ever since that historic outing bicycles have been welcomed in Yellowstone National Park. However as stage roads gave way to auto roads, and auto roads became more congested the bicycle has become less common, and is now both a dangerous and congestive mode of transport in Yellowstone.
.. The shoulder seasons belong to the bicyclists. There are only bears, bison, bears, cougars, bears, eagles, bears, waterfowl, bears, and a few administrative travelers on the roads. If you pick the right day, and have prepared well, there is nothing like a Spring bike ride in Yellowstone.
.. Because of construction at the West Entrance, and bears in the Old faithful area there are new restrictions on bicycle travel this year.
-- National Park Service Press Release
-- Yellowstone Park 'Spring Bicycling' Page
-- Yellowstone Park 'Hiking In The Park' Page
-- Yellowstone Park Bears Resource Page
-- Yellowstone Park Pet Regulations, your pet dog cannot run free beside your bicycle - no matter who you are.
-- Yellowstone Park Rules and Regulations,
-- Yellowstone Park 'Viewing Wildlife' Page
.. Many people, including Park Rangers, Park Employees, Concessionaire Employees, and self styled "experts" get hurt every year because they treat wildlife viewing as a game or a pleasant sport. Don't be fooled: if you join a screaming crowd of bicycle riders ooohing and aaahing this Spring, you too may become a target.
.. The videos below are from the Yellowstone Park Video Page. There is more danger and stupidity there if you care to look.
Bison Trees Visitor
Bison at Old Faithful
In 1896 the 25th Infantry rode, walked, and carried their bicycles cross country to Yellowstone Park, 500 miles from their Fort Missoula base. They pose below on Minerva Terrace at the town of Mammoth Hot Springs in a photograph taken and hand colored by Yellowstone's official freelance photographer F. Jay Haynes (1853-1921). Note that the troops mounted from the left side of the bike, according to the custom for mounting a horse. (FROM: Northern Rockies Heritage Center.)

Thursday, March 06, 2008

The Straight Skinny

.. The Yellowstone National Park website has a web cam page that is always current, and so far always correct. It's originality in titling is wonderful: Yellowstone National Park's WebCams. For those of you that like to view the park from afar - this is a blessing.
.. The recently added streaming camera at Old Faithful has had some glitches and some address changes, during it's set up and the usual tinkering that goes along with new installations of this sort. You can always be sure of your address or link if you go to the above mentioned page.
.. Come July and August the air quality cameras should prove interesting - given the price of gas and it's continuing escalation.
.. As an aside, the NPS photo above shows a genuine UFO captured by the Old Faithful Web Cam. Don't believe it? Go to the National UFO Center for more information.
.. And, the current streaming web cam is the outgrowth of discussions with the Ames Research Center in their development of the 2005 wayside interpretive center. But - it seems that Mars and Yellowstone have stopped being a topic of discussion.
.. Finally, the west entrance station will have it's old canopy moved to the new entrance station and the construction will hamper free access during the shoulder season. Read the NPS Press Release.

Saturday, March 01, 2008

It's Birthday Time Again

And Many Happy Returns

.. As is our tradition, here is the text of the 1872 bill and the "Grant Signature"


Forty-Second Congress. Session II Ch. 21-24. 1872. March 1, 1872. CHAP. XXIV. -- An Act to set apart a certain Tract of Land lying near the Head-waters of the Yellowstone River as a public Park.
Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled, That the tract of land in the Territories of Montana and Wyoming, lying near the head-waters of the Yellowstone river, and described as follows, to wit, commencing at the junction of Gardiner's river with the Yellowstone river, and running east to the meridian passing ten miles to the eastward of the most eastern point of Yellowstone lake; thence south along said meridian to the parallel of latitude passing ten miles south of the most southern point of Yellowstone lake; thence west along said parallel to the meridian passing fifteen miles west of the most western point of Madison lake; thence north along said meridian to the latitude of the junction of the Yellowstone and Gardiner's rivers; thence east to the place of beginning, is hereby reserved and withdrawn from settlement, occupancy, or sale under the laws of the United States, and dedicated and set apart as a public park or pleasuring-ground for the benefit and enjoyment of the people; and all persons who shall locate or settle upon or occupy the same, or any part thereof, except as hereinafter provided, shall be considered trespassers and removed therefrom.

SECTION 2. That said public park shall be under the exclusive control of the Secretary of the Interior, whose duty it shall be, as soon as practicable, to make and publish such rules and regulations as he may deem necessary or proper for the care and management of the same. Such regulations shall provide for the preservation, from injury or spoliation, of all timber, mineral deposits, natural curiosities, or wonders within said park, and their retention in their natural conditions. The secretary may in his discretion, grant leases for building purposes for terms not exceeding ten years, of small parcels or ground; at such places in said park as shall require the erection of buildings for the accommodation of visitors; all of the proceeds of said leases, and all other revenues that may be derived from any source connected with said park, to be expended under his direction in the management of the same, and the construction of roads and bridle-paths therein. He shall provide against the wanton destruction of the fish and game found within said park, and against their capture or destruction for the purposes of merchandise or profit. He shall also cause all persons trespassing upon the same after the passage of this act to be removed therefrom, and generally shall be authorized to take all such measures as shall be necessary or proper to fully carry out the objects and purposes of this act.

APPROVED March 1st 1872
U. S. Grant (Signed)