Happy Birthday to Kari started off our day, we got up and out early and made one more return trip to the Hayden Valley to try and get the morning light and animals. We weren’t disappointed. The steam rising from the river created an eerie scene as we traveled the road nearly alone. We returned to the same spot from the previous evening and found the same Bison herd just moving down into the river bottoms. We witnessed a few bulls still battling for mating rights and a cow and calf that just had to eat in the road. We returned to the Mud Volcano to get some pics we had missed due to rain the night before. We stayed until the masses joined us and then returned to pack up camp.
As I was packing the bike, I heard some strange noises behind me, I thought it was people in the other camp, but I soon realized they weren’t there. I was surprised to see a large bison only a few feet away munching on the grass near the Tiger’s rear tire. I couldn’t get the camera out fast enough to get a good pic, but I snapped this one as he wandered off. Back on the bike and headed south out of the park. Back through the torn up roads in the Rockefeller preserve and into the Grand Teton National Park. We decided to take the east road through the park at Moran Junction and see the Tetons from afar. I had never been on this road but I will be back. The views were stunning and the weather was perfect. We made a few stops along the way, the Cunningham Cabin and Snake River overlook (where we tried in vain to copy Ansel Adams famous pic) were the definite highlights. A trip back through Jackson and a left turn at Hoback Junction had us on our way to Pinedale and the Wind River Range.
The afternoon ride was uneventful, but like every other day possessed another unique beauty and wildness that is becoming so rare in the lower 48. A quick stop for dinner ingredients and a bottle of wine in Pinedale and we headed into the hills. We found a great little spot next to one of the lakes and had an awesome picnic on the rock and a birthday celebration. As the sun set over the lake I reflected on an amazing five day trip, and my mind already was planning the next one. Tomorrow we would head for home to cap the week with Booker T and the DBT’s at Red Butte Garden.