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Yellowstone/Grand Teton Trip

Day 10 of 11

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Sunday, July 31st
Drive to Salt Lake City

Although it was a bit cold, it didn't rain at our camp overnight. It was overcast but still not raining in the morning. We woke up around 8am and packed up our camp, finally leaving a bit before check-out time (11am).

We stopped by the visitor center at Colter Bay so the boys could get their junior ranger badges, then spent a little time browsing the gift shop. We dropped our propane stove fuel in the recycling bins (there are special bins just for this purpose), and gave our unused bear spray to the store for re-use or recycling.

Then we started the drive south to Salt Lake City. Along the way, we stopped briefly at Oxbow Bend, a branch of the Snake River. Then we continued south, stopping at an overlook of the Snake River -- this was where Ansel Adams took his famous picture. The overcast conditions did not lead to the best conditions for a picture, but I took some anyway.

Tetons above Snake River at Oxbow Bend

Tetons above Snake River (taken from area where Ansel Adams took his famous picture)

From there, we continued south to the town of Jackson, which resembles the town of Banff. It's crowded, with lots of traffic and shops. I'm sure it's a nice place to visit if you're into that kind of thing, but we were kind of turned off by the crowds. Plus, we had a long drive ahead of us still, so we kept right on going.

We drove further south, eventually stopping at a boat launch area near East Table Creek campground. We had lunch in the parking lot, looking out at the Snake River. Then we continued our journey, taking highway 34 through Idaho (hey, I just followed the directions my GPS gave me). At one point, one of the oncoming drivers flashed his lights at me. I wondered what it meant, but I slowed down and soon had my answer. Around the corner was a cow. In the middle of the road. I waited for it to cross, then proceeded. So, if a driver in Idaho flashes his headlights at you, be prepared to stop for a cow!

Boat launch area by Snake River

About an hour north of Salt Lake City, we saw a creepy lightning storm in front of us. We could see the flashes and hear the thunder, but what made it creepy was the snaking dark clouds, looking like smoke coming out of the mountains to the east. Maybe there was some smoke (caused by lightning strikes), I don't know. In any case, we kept going and soon the rain hit us hard. It rained hard most of the way to Salt Lake City. I was glad our flight didn't leave until tomorrow.

We had a nice dinner in town, then settled into our hotel room, where we dried out the rain fly from our tent. Then we packed everything, preparing for our flight home.


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