Yellowstone, Day 3 & Old Faithful

For all of you that thought that after 45 years I was "Old Faithful."  I am, of course, speaking of the geyser in Yellowstone. The most striking part of the area near Old Faithful, is the Lodge.  It is so different and great that it will capture a lot of the picture space in this post.  The designer of the Lodge did his best to bring the outside of the park inside and in a lot of ways was successful. 
The lodge is built like a pole barn inside, out of Native Lodge Pole Pines
The inside is five stories tall and it gave me vertigo when I tried to loot at all the details.  The arms or supports on the main poles are taken fro the part of the park over by the lake lodge area.  The native Lodge pole pines are pretty much small trunks straight up and down. 

One neat feature is way up in the top of the lodge is a tree house. 
Tree House five stories up in the top of OF Lodge

As soon as Old Faithful stopped spurting the crowds rushed out to go somewhere else.

Old Faithful early morning spout
Our tour guide Catherine spent a lot of time telling us about the 6th form of life, archaea  that lives in the steaming pools.  It seems that it is not animal vegetable or mineral but a form of life that lives in water too hot, too basic or acidic for other forms to live in.  It is the source of color in most of the pools and fountains.  It takes iron and uses it for food to survive.  It was found only in Yellowstone (and a hot water heater in Japan) and NASA wants to sent some of it to Mars and perhaps bring life to that planet.   Below is a picture of one of the Mud Pots where it was first found

Mud Pot home to the sixth form of life
Our guide had the bus stop along a road and showed us the unique place that NASA tried to close down to tourists because it held the latest for of life.  It can reproduce DNA at boiling temperatures and is reason we now have DNA replication called PCR.  The old method was long and cumbersome. Thanks to the find of this form of life, duplication of DNA is now quick and easy.  I would tell you how but the description of this from our guide was a lot like someone asking what time it was and they were told how a watch works. 

If you go no where else in Yellowstone, go to Old Faithful and the geyser basin it sits in.  There is more hot steam there than in Washington, D.C.  You could stay there and see a lot of water vapor escaping into the air. 

Tomorrow I will try to post the geysers, mud pots and boiling water places.


No comments:

Post a Comment