Cycling in Yellowstone National Park


“Eric, stop!  Just stop for a minute.  He’s running let’s see which way he is going!  Stop Moving!” I yelled as the grizzly bear took off in front of us.  “I want to get up where they are,” he replied.  I hadn’t seen the hikers already another 20 yards closer taking pictures.  I figured we only had to move faster than them and we were on wheels. Im not sure who was in the safest spot, the hikers or the cyclists.

Eric finally stopping to take a picture of the grizzly

Still, I was planning the quickest route on how I was going to get in front of Eric should the bear turn and run in our direction, because just like a mama bear feeding with her cubs, you do what needs to be done when it comes to protecting your children.

Animals do seem bigger though when pedaling right beside them, but don’t get me wrong this grizzly bear was big regardless of being on a bike or in a car.  It was awesome to ride up on our bikes, and see a buffalo, elk or deer grazing along side the road.  It was like front row seats at a concert! It just didn’t get any better.

Back to the bear, it ran about 30 yards ahead of us across the bike trail and ran up the hill.  WHEW!  It was an amazing and rare sight apparently.  We were lucky in many, many ways, considering the next day a tragic event occurred when a hiker was mauled and killed by a grizzly bear in Yellowstone Park. Tourists really need to heed the warnings posted in the park pertaining to wildlife, but sometimes you are just walking/riding along and there they are. So you do what you can to protect yourself.

We rode on through the park around Old Faithful, which at times erupts more than 7300 feet into the air. We circled around many of the 300 geysers, 10,000 hot springs and other hydro-thermal features dotted throughout the park, but didn’t even come close to seeing all of them.  It was so awesome.  

From what I had read about vacationing in Yellowstone was that detailed plans needed to be made, and as usual, I didn’t have any plans!  It was July 4th weekend and we were hoping we would be able to find a place to sleep.  We found a campsite in Grant Village located within the park, which had a spot for two nights.   It was beautiful!

Though it did rain while we were away watching fireworks in Old West Yellowstone, and got our tent and blankets a bit wet, Ok, really wet!  I threw some of them out of the tent and salvaged what we could.  We slept in our rain jackets and as many dry clothes as we had.  It was a bit chilly, but who can complain.  Life sucks….IF you let it!  The next morning we threw blankets over the car and picnic table to dry, looking a bit like hillbilly’s on vacation, and took off to go fishing in Yellowstone Lake.  What an awesome time in Yellowstone.

About cessley

I am a bereaved parent. I write to give hope to other bereaved parents who are fresh in their grief. I want them to know life begins again. It (life) is forever changed, as are you, but one day, you will smile again. You may travel, you will make new friends, your heart will mend, though never heal and it will be a painful ride. It is one step at a time....sometimes, even one breath to the next is all we can seem to live through each day. But each day will be a new beginning, a different beginning, a different you. I have two surviving children: Amy, who is married to Brandon, and they have one daughter, Avery, and one son, Dylan. and Eric who is a doctor and is Clifton's twin brother. Clifton passed away when he was nearly two years old. As any bereaved parent knows, it is tough, REALLY tough trying to live after the death of a child. I lived in Shanghai, China for three years after the death of my son, and then lived in Beijing for two years. I am discovering life again, one step at a time. I returned to Oklahoma in February , 2020 due to the uncertainty of the virus. Little did I know the uncertainty would follow me across the ocean. This is nothing compared to the death of a child. I will survive! View all posts by cessley

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