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Morning and Memories in Yellowstone


I work near Gardiner, Montana. My wife is a Ranger at Tower, inside Yellowstone Park. My first summer in Yellowstone was 1972 (YIKES!). So 35 years ago I started working here. My wife started in '74. We got married 25 years ago yesterday in Mammoth. My Best Man was on the same YPSS crew that I was on at Canyon in '72. He lives in Gardiner and works at Mammoth.

I remember meeting folks who'd been around 10, 20, 30 years and more when I first got here and being amazed. That's us now - and I'm still amazed.

It's hard to know what to make of it all but I'm happy to say I'm still not too jaded. The drive to Gardiner from Tower this morning was spectacular. I left about 6...

* A few dozen bison across the road from our place at Tower

* Two moose near the Petrified Tree Road

* More bison near Floating Island Lake

* the same black bear that I saw yesterday near Phantom Lake. The locals say it has blue eyes - I've never heard of that before...

* dozens of elk, including this one chomping on the grass in Mammoth.

* ANOTHER black bear, jumping the guard rail near the 45th parallel between Mammoth and Gardiner

* and watching the sun light up that gorgeous piece of geology known as Devil's Slide.

We're spoiled brats out here. This is a life I had not imagined for myself growing up. It broke free for me when a high school friend got a tip from his Uncle about working in Yellowstone and we came out together that first summer.


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