A road trip through the US of A - Part X: Heading out west - Des Moines, IA - Reno, NV
Late in the afternoon, we crossed into Wyoming. Already Iowa had been sparsely populated for our feeling. With roughly six times the surface of Switzerland, not even half the people living there. But Wyoming beats this without blinking an eye. Also roughly six times the surface of Switzerland, there's only about 580'000 people living there. Or one fifteenth of the population of Switzerland. It's so empty that
We arrived at Devils Tower National Monument just before dark, right on time to experience it with a magnificient sunset. Lucky us, the public camping just beneath the Devils Tower still had space. We enjoyed a quiet and relaxed night in this beautiful environment. In the morning, we walked up to the parking lot at the foot of the monument and back. My ankle still didn't allow for more. But one day, we'll be back, climbing that thing. Hopefully.
|A hunters home|
Then it was wilderness time again! Through thick fog we drove up the bighorn mountains and down again to the arid plain on the other side. A short detour brought us into the beautiful Bighorn Canyon. Our daily drive ended in Cody, WY, the last town of any size before Yellowstone where we stocked up on fuel and groceries, as this would be much more expensive for the next 500
|At Bighorn Canyon|
We left early morning in order to secure ourselves a camping spot at one of the government run campsites inside Yellowstone. The one at Canyon Village was already full when we got there at 8am, but we found a beautiful spot on Norris Campground a few miles further where immediately decided to stay for three nights. On the way, we had our first very close encounter with buffaloes. They got pretty much extinct in most of the US, but there's a couple of populations left and the one in Yellowstone is probably the healthiest one. As it was before noon when we arrived and got our camping spot, we had an early lunch and then set out to explore a first part of the park.
|Buffalo in Yellowstone|
|Grand Teton National Park|
|Craters of the Moon|
Back in 2010, Lisa had been to California and stayed with some friends of a friend, called the llamas, because they actually do have some llamas in their back yard. As we were on the way to California, we contacted them a few days before to see if it would be possible to pay them a visit. Unfortunately, they were planning to move to their summer home up in Montana during that time. But we were, once again, very lucky. They were taking the same highway like us and so we could meet them 50 miles outside Reno at a petrol station for drinks and a chat. What perfect timing.
More pictures from our road trip leaving Des Moines, IA to Minden, NV