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Yellowstone Day 2

Yellowstone and Bear Feeding time

semi-overcast 75 °F
View Grandkids Trip 2019 #2 on Miss Chris's travel map.

The plan for today was made around the Grizzly & Wolf Discovery Center, as we needed to be there for the 3:30 pm food hiding session. This worked out well as we always take the grandkids out for 1 nice breakfast so we headed to Yellowstone for breakfast at the Old Faithful Inn.

Grandkids were on their best behavior, sitting up straight, napkins on the lap, using the flatware properly, no elbows on the table. Each kid acted as the etiquette police on the others.
From breakfast 2 kids got their Jr. Ranger badges then watched Old Faithful and finished off with ice cream, this time from the Old Faithful Inn. We sat on the balcony eating our ice cream as we did with the older grandkids many years ago. After one last eruption from Old Faithful, we had to get back to West Yellowstone for the bears.
The bear feeding does not include giving food directly to the bears. The staff clears the bears out of the enclosure, into another separate cage. The bears are separated from the kids and staff by 3-200 lb metal doors.

The outdoor enclosure is quite large. There is a ditch between the visitors and the bear habitat. Then after an area of grass, there are rocks, not large rocks but probably up to 1’ in diameter. The rocks are piled up several feet deep, in the area about 4’ across and 60’ long. Behind the rocks are plants and grass.

The bears were cleared out of the enclosure and then kids, in a line, followed the staff into the main enclosure. Kids were given apples to throw into a pond. Then each kid was given a bucket with special food that kids described looking like dog food. They were told to bury the food under the rocks, with bigger kids helping the smaller ones when they finished.

Our 3 kids were most interested in trying to make it as difficult as possible for the bear to find the food. This meant finding the heaviest rocks to pile on the food. Sequoia and Zaya worked together while Lucian worked alone. They were certain that the bear would not find or access their food quickly.
Kids were let out of the enclosure and we all stood on a viewing deck to watch as one bear came out. The bear went straight to Lucian’s cache, tossing the rocks aside as if they were pebbles. She found the food and stuffed it down. Then she went to Zaya and Sequoias, again tossing the rocks aside with little to no effort. The kids couldn’t believe it, they’d worked so hard to hide everything but the bear, with no effort, found everything.
We visited the wolves and raptors once more, then, said goodbye to Yellowstone.

We did not encounter wild animals inside of Yellowstone, but Dale and I were fine with that. The animals can cause huge delays and with grandkids, we were concerned about safety. The Discovery Center gave them a wildlife experience in a safe environment.

Posted by Miss Chris 12:50 Archived in USA Tagged road_trip travel camping living rv yellowstone family_travel rv_travel grandkids_trip rv_adventures 2007_gmc_sierra 2007_gmc_2500 west_yellowstone grizzly_&_wolf_discovery_center Comments (0)

Locked Out But Lucked Out

Locking ourselves out of our truck led to an encounter that would lead to an amazing adventure

sunny 70 °F
View Grandkids Trip 2019 #2 on Miss Chris's travel map.

We had a 14-hour drive to West Yellowstone, our next stop, and had paid for a campsite that we couldn’t cancel. But, after letting kids swim on Monday morning, shopping at Trader Joe’s and Costco, we got a late start. That meant driving not so far as we’d hoped on Monday and arriving later on Tuesday.

We finally got into West Yellowstone just before the RV park office closed on Tuesday. I ran into the office with my wallet while Dale stayed in the truck with the kids.
As luck would have it, Dale let kids out to play at the playground next to the office and he then got out of the truck. A bag of mixed nuts fell out of his door so he went to retrieve it and as he did that, shut his door which promptly locked all doors. This, of course, meant that both sets of keys were locked inside.

We called AAA right away and they said they would send someone out. The office also suggested calling the local police as they might provide some help. The office gave us bottles of water and offered to get us dinner if we would need it.

After we waited for nearly 45 minutes with no response from AAA I called them to see what we could find out. Then after waiting another 15 minutes on hold we gave up and called the local police who recommended a local (1/2 hour away) locksmith.

I called the locksmith and he said he would come right away. By this time it was getting dark and cold. We could see our sweatshirts thru the windows.

The locksmith came within ½ hour and opened the door for us. We chatted as he worked and he said that this was his evening job, he worked at a non-profit animal rescue center during the day. As we walked to his truck he reminded us of the rescue center and said that the kids would enjoy it. He gave us a brochure and went on his way.

We got into the truck with the kids and I looked at the brochure. There were bears, wolfs and birds to be seen. There was a bear feeding time in which kids could participate in hiding the food. All of this 2-blocks away from our campsite and we would have missed out if we would not have met the locksmith.

Posted by Miss Chris 08:21 Archived in USA Tagged road_trip travel camping living rv family_travel rv_travel grandkids_trip rv_adventures 2007_gmc_sierra 2007_gmc_2500 west_yellowstone Comments (0)

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