"There is nothing so American as our national parks. The scenery and wildlife are native. The fundamental idea behind the parks is native. It is, in brief, that the country belongs to the people, that it is in process of making for the enrichment of the lives of all of us. The parks stand as the outward symbol of this great human principle." Franklin D. Roosevelt

Monday, September 28, 2009

Smoke Gets in Your Eyes

View of Sunset Through Smoke Across Yellowstone Lake
Notice the change in direction of the smoke from last night.

Smoke Bank in Hayden Valley With Washburn Range in Background

Bison in Smoke Filled Hayden Valley

Canyon Village was filled with smoke all morning and most of the afternoon. I've always enjoyed a good campfire but forest fire smoke is much different. You can't get away from it. My eyes were red, my throat hurt, my nose ran and a had a headache until I was nauseous. After work I used my Visine, wiped my nose (I did that during the day, too), took some Aleve, ate a cookie and I felt much better. So I took my evening drive to Hayden Valley.

Though Canyon cleared up considerably during the day Hayden Valley was filled with smoke. I did find a herd of elk in the river by Alum Creek and a herd bison by Elk Antler Creek. I proceeded on to Steamboat Point and took a few shots of the sun setting through the smoke again. Tonight I could not see the shoreline by Lake as the fire has crossed the road to the south of there. The smoke came out and over the water. I talked with someone today who works at Lake and they reported that the air was filled with smoke and ash.

As I returned to Canyon I noticed that the smoke was much lower to the ground and areas just an hour before didn't have smoke now did. It is dark out now so I'm unable to see smoke but I can smell it very strongly again. It permeates everything: hair, clothing, inside of buildings.

The lodging in Canyon closed yesterday, as did the dining room. With the road closures (preventing tour buses from coming from the south), and the lodging closing, the store has become much quieter. I worked in the Fountain again today. What just a couple days ago had been a two-person job I can now accomplish by myself.