The weather turned back from winter into autumn on Saturday and we could see more and more of the park. We ventured out to the Canyon area of Yellowstone to Artist Point (my Disney friends should know why we wanted to go there) to see the Upper and Lower Falls. Well, it was beautiful, just as expected. I can really understand why they called Artist Point.

We decided to take little hike down Uncle Tom’s Trail. It didn’t seem like too much of a strenuous hike, just going down about 500ft into the canyon to get a more up close view and feel of the Lower Falls. Going down was a little scary, there are about 300 metal steps and it gets a bit steep at times and you can see through the steps. Not recommended for those with vertigo! But when you were down there, it was all worth it. Now comes the trouble, going back up those 300 plus steps. About two thirds of the way up I was getting a bit short of breath, nothing to worry about, just a bit tired, have a sip of water, rest for a bit, I’ll be on my way again in no time. Or so I thought… The out of breath thing soon turned into feeling dizzy. Then my complexion turned from a glowy red from the exercise into a colour that rivalled my lovely warm coat (also know as the wearable duvet). I wanted to throw up, but didn’t wanted to spoil the landscape. We thought it might have been some kind of motion sickness somehow, that’s what it felt like. So I tried to do what they teach you when you get seasick: stare at one point. No, that wasn’t making it any better either. In fact, it got worse. I couldn’t focus on anything anymore, everything started to go blurry and I was starting to see white blobs. This was the point where Niels asked “Shall I get a ranger?” and my answer was “yes, please”. But as luck would have it, at that point some other hikers came by who quickly started helping out. One of them asked a bunch of questions and said “it’s the elevation”. At this elevation (higher than 7000ft), you tend to react differently and the combination of the quick hike up and the not insignificant difference in altitude, turned out to be the culprit. They quickly cleared a bench of snow for me to lie down on, heart and head at the same level, and concentrate on breathing (and drink some water if it won’t make you throw up). Strangers can be so nice at times. As I was lying there for about 20 minutes, slowly feeling better, a few more hikers came by, all offering help or their water bottles. I managed the rest of the hike up, going at a snail’s pace. We came across the people who helped out on the way back up, turns out one of them was a doctor. Lucky me. We took it really easy the rest of the day. That was a scary moment out there.

Anyway, the rest of the day was so lovely. We drove to areas of Yellowstone we hadn’t seen yet. And at this time of year, there are few tourist in the park, at times we even felt like we had the park to ourselves. We went out by Lake Yellowstone, it was soooo quiet out there, you could only hear the sound of the water hitting the shore. Pure serenity. Bliss. We were so glad we came to Yellowstone at this time. People had been telling us how busy it gets here in summer, bumper to bumper pretty much. Now, everything was so peaceful and quiet, just how you’d imagine it should be.

We loved Yellowstone so much that we decided to stay an extra day. That meant we wouldn’t get to go to Badlands, but we just didn’t want to leave. So after the final morning at the Old Faithful Inn (it closed for the winter that day!) and seeing the Old Faithful Geyser go off once more, we went to the Mammoth Hot Springs area. Now, the weather had turned into a really beautiful autumn’s day! It was just perfect. The Mammoth Hot Springs are so weird and wonderful, like nothing else on this planet. In fact, it felt all rather alien, but so cool! At the old fort area, elk were roaming about as if they owned the place. We parked the RV at the Mammoth Campground, made a campfire again and spent the evening outside. It was a perfect last evening in Yellowstone. As we left the campground the following morning, we were greeted by some more elk. Now, you are supposed to stay 25ft away from them at all times. Not always as easy…

Bye bye Yellowstone

4 Responses to “Altitude Sickness… not nice…”

  • marjan says:

    wow!!!!! wat een reis, die foto’s zijn echt zalig…

    ik kan me inbeelden dat de hoogteziekte beangstigend was, gelukkig is alles ok.
    nog een leuke en veilige trip gewenst,


  • Barb says:

    WoW, what a trip. It just gets better and better. Sylvia, be careful; no more altitude problems pleez. You too Frilly. Glad you are taking me with you, cause i could never do all that hiking stuff. Miss you both Hugs

  • Sharon says:

    Beautiful pics! So glad you felt better after the hikers helped you out. I once got altitude sickness in Vegas!! How weird is that?! Continued safe travels on your journey….what a beautiful trip!

  • Vanessa says:

    Je laat ons dromen :-)
    Effe een slecht moment en weer verder, zo kennen we je wel hé. Geniet er nog van!


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