American Northwest Trip, 2017: Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone

Seems appropriate, as I count down to my upcoming trip to the actual Grand Canyon, to share some photos of a different “grand canyon” in Yellowstone National Park. My day at the Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone included a couple of hikes along the spectacular gorge with nice views of the lower falls, a short hike to the brink of the upper falls, and a stroll to a secluded area of the Yellowstone River just ahead of the falls. Of the many fascinating areas in Yellowstone, this among its most beautiful.

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American Northwest Trip, 2017: Wyoming Scenic Drive

These photos are from my long drive across the entire state of Wyoming from Yellowstone to Deadwood, South Dakota, a roughly ten-hour drive counting stops and other delays. The road trip began with a scenic drive out of Yellowstone via the East Entrance (first photo), followed by a gorgeous drive through Shoshone National Forest (middle nine photos).

After a stop in Cody for dinner and a visit to an Old West town, I got back on the road and spent hours as frequently the only car on a flat, single-lane highway—the kind of seemingly deserted road you see in the movies. I passed by myriad ranches and their large, wooden entry gates, as well as numerous oil derricks. For a moment I was concerned that I might have to drive through major cities during rush hour, but then I remembered I was in Wyoming, where there’s no such thing as a major city.

I was beginning to think that the rest of the drive through Wyoming would be mostly flat and uninteresting—until I hit Bighorn National Forest (the last four photos). What a stunning drive that was, up and down a mountain range through spectacular scenery. It’s a shame I only had time to stop for a few photos (ones that don’t do it justice) because I literally could have stopped every hundred feet. It’s an area that demands a return visit some day just to spend more time basking in its breathtaking scenery.

If you ever find yourself driving through Wyoming, I highly recommend leaving the freeway and taking a drive along Highway 14 through these amazing national forests.

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American Northwest Trip, 2017: Wildlife Loop, Custer State Park

On the way to Mount Rushmore I detoured for several scenic drives, including Custer State Park’s Wildlife Loop, which takes you through rolling green hills reminiscent of the English countryside. For most of the drive I did not encounter much wildlife except for a lone antelope and a distant herd of bison, but toward the end I came upon a vast field of prairie dogs, antelope, and other animals. It’s a nice, pleasant drive, worth the diversion if you have the time.

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American Northwest Trip, 2017: Timberline Lodge

Knowing that Portland was only a 90-minute drive to Mount Hood, I couldn’t resist spending my final night in Oregon at Timberline Lodge near its summit. The lodge was made famous by The Shining—Kubrick used exterior shots of the lodge to depict the Overlook Hotel. Although the interior was not used in the film, Timberline has fully embraced its Shining legacy, as some of the photos below make clear.

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American Northwest Trip, 2017: Grand Teton Historic Buildings

There are numerous historic buildings located throughout Grand Teton National Park. Here are some shots I took of the iconic homesteads along Mormon Row, as well as a few photos of the Chapel of the Transfiguration.

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Black and White Challenge

A while back I decided to experiment with converting some of my color photos to black and white. Here are the results.

In some cases I think the black-and-white conversions actually breathed new life into the pictures. This is particularly true of the Eiffel Tower and Machu Picchu photos, in which significantly more details can now be seen than had been visible in original color shots.

Paris, France: Eiffel Tower – July, 2014

Machu Picchu, Peru – August, 2012

Grand Teton National Park – August, 2017

Oliver Grant-Rappa – April, 2016

Cape May, New Jersey – June, 2017

You can view more featured photos at my Photo of the Day Collection.

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American Northwest Trip, 2017: Grand Teton National Park

When I was planning my trip out west last year, I wasn’t sure whether a day trip to Grand Teton National Park was worth spending one fewer day in Yellowstone, so I inquired with a couple of friends, who told me that I should definitely see it. I decided to go for it, and I’m glad that I did. Grand Teton is a park filled with majestic mountain peaks and beautiful lakes. The photos below feature shots taken at Jenny Lake, Jackson Lake, and Snake River (site of one of Ansel Adams’ most famous photographs), as well as miscellaneous photos taken from around the park. My next post will highlight Grand Teton’s historic buildings, such as those located on Mormon Row.

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American Northwest Trip, 2017: Iron Mountain Road and Mount Rushmore

These photos are from my visit to Mount Rushmore, including a drive along the scenic Iron Mountain Road. If you ever visit Mount Rushmore, I highly recommend first driving Iron Mountain Road from south to north. Complete with switchbacks, pigtail bridges, and single lane tunnels, it is a beautiful drive culminating in the final tunnel that frames Mount Rushmore as you drive through it. Along the way there are scenic lookouts, including one in which you can get your first look at Mount Rushmore from a distance across the valley.

As for Mount Rushmore itself, it is more impressive in person than photos would lead you to believe. It was late in the day by the time I got there so I only stayed long enough to take a few pics, though there is a hike around the monument if you have more time.

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American Northwest Trip, 2017: Portland Waterfront

Photos from my walk along the Portland waterfront, as well as my ride on the Portland Aerial Tram, which carries passengers between the waterfront district and Marquam Hill. I also included a few photos of Portland viewed from high up in my apartment. It’s such a lovely city.

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American Northwest Trip, 2017: Old Trail Town

During my long drive across the entire state of Wyoming I stopped in Cody for a visit to Old Trail Town, a recreation of an old west town using authentic buildings collected from around Wyoming and Montana. The buildings were disassembled, moved and reassembled at Old Trail Town. Among the buildings here are original cabins used by Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid, a saloon frequented by Cassidy’s “Hole-in-the-Wall Gang,” and the home of the Crow Indian scout who led Custer to Little Big Horn. There are also tons of historic Old West artifacts and grave sites of several notable Western figures.

It’s a nice little diversion on the way to or from Yellowstone for fans of the old west; I think the entry fee was $10. There weren’t many people there so I pretty much had the run of the place and was able to get some nice shots. I chose high-contrast processing for a lot of the photos to give them a more vintage feel. I considered going all out and converting them to black-and-white/sepia but decided it would be too much work. Perhaps I’ll convert a few of them at a later date.

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Yellowstone National Park - August, 2017 Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone - Lower Falls I hiked all the way down to the boardwalk below via the Red Rock Point trail. It was a long climb back up. #gorges #GrandCanyonoftheYellowstone #landscapes #NorthAmerica #Photography #rivers #roadtrips #Travel #UnitedStates #waterfalls #Wyoming #YelllowstoneFalls #YellowstoneGorge #YellowstoneNationalPark #YellowstoneRiver #LowerFalls
Yellowstone National Park - August, 2017 Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone - Another view of the Lower Falls from Artist Point. #gorges #GrandCanyonoftheYellowstone #landscapes #NorthAmerica #Photography #rivers #roadtrips #Travel #UnitedStates #waterfalls #Wyoming #YelllowstoneFalls #YellowstoneGorge #YellowstoneNationalPark #YellowstoneRiver #LowerFalls
Yellowstone National Park - August, 2017 Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone - Lower Falls viewed from Artist Point. Seems appropriate, as I count down to my upcoming trip to the actual Grand Canyon, to share a photo of a different “grand canyon” in Yellowstone National Park, featuring a majestic waterfall emptying into a stunning gorge. Of the many fascinating areas in Yellowstone, this among its most beautiful. #gorges #GrandCanyonoftheYellowstone #landscapes #NorthAmerica #Photography #rivers #roadtrips #Travel #UnitedStates #waterfalls #Wyoming #YelllowstoneFalls #YellowstoneGorge #YellowstoneNationalPark #YellowstoneRiver #LowerFalls
Shoshone National Forest, Wyoming - August, 2017 One more from Shoshone National Forest. I love how this photo turned out, feels like an establishing shot for a Western. #buttes #forests #landscapes #mountains #NorthAmerica #Photography #roadtrips #scenicdrives #shoeshonenationalforest #Travel #UnitedStates #Wyoming
Shoshone National Forest, Wyoming - August, 2017 Another shot of Shoshone National Forest, taken during my long drive across the entire state of Wyoming from Yellowstone to Deadwood, South Dakota. If you are driving to or from the Yellowstone East Entrance, you will encounter this gorgeous scenery along Highway 14. #buttes #forests #landscapes #mountains #NorthAmerica #Photography #roadtrips #scenicdrives #shoeshonenationalforest #Travel #UnitedStates #Wyoming
Bighorn National Forest, Wyoming - August, 2017 Another shot taken in Bighorn National Forest. If you ever find yourself driving through Wyoming, I highly recommend leaving the freeway and taking a drive along Highway 14 through some amazing scenery like this. #bighornnationalforest #forests #landscapes #mountains #NorthAmerica #Photography #roadtrips #scenicdrives #shoeshonenationalforest #Travel #UnitedStates #Wyoming
Shoshone National Forest, Wyoming - August, 2017 This is Shoshone National Forest, taken during my long drive across the entire state of Wyoming from Yellowstone to Deadwood, South Dakota. If you are driving to or from the Yellowstone East Entrance, you will encounter this gorgeous scenery along Highway 14. #buttes #forests #landscapes #mountains #NorthAmerica #Photography #roadtrips #scenicdrives #shoeshonenationalforest #Travel #UnitedStates #Wyoming
Bighorn National Forest, Wyoming - August, 2017 This is Bighorn National Forest, a stunning drive up and down a mountain range through spectacular scenery. It’s an area that demands a return visit some day just to spend more time basking in its breathtaking beauty. If you ever find yourself driving through Wyoming, I highly recommend leaving the freeway and taking a drive along Highway 14 through this amazing national forest. #bighornnationalforest #forests #landscapes #mountains #NorthAmerica #Photography #roadtrips #scenicdrives #shoeshonenationalforest #Travel #UnitedStates #Wyoming
Wildlife Loop, Custer State Park, South Dakota - September, 2017 Toward the end of my drive along Custer State Park’s Wildlife Loop, I encountered a massive field of prairie dogs. Here's one of the little critters. #animals #CusterStatePark #nature #NorthAmerica #Photography #roadtrips #scenicdrives #SouthDakota #Travel #UnitedStates #wildlife #wildlifeloop #prairiedogs
Wildlife Loop, Custer State Park, South Dakota - September, 2017 On the way to Mount Rushmore I detoured for several scenic drives, including Custer State Park’s Wildlife Loop, which takes you through rolling green hills reminiscent of the English countryside. It’s a nice, pleasant drive, worth the diversion if you have the time. This photo features an antelope (lower right) relaxing in front of some of those hills. #animals #antelope #CusterStatePark #hills #landscapes #nature #NorthAmerica #Photography #roadtrips #rollinggreenhills #scenicdrives #SouthDakota #Travel #UnitedStates #wildlife #wildlifeloop
Timberline Lodge, Mount Hood, Oregon - August, 2017 Knowing that Portland was only a 90-minute drive to Mount Hood, I couldn't resist spending my final night in Oregon at Timberline Lodge near its summit. The lodge was made famous by The Shining—Kubrick used exterior shots of the lodge to depict the Overlook Hotel. Although the interior was not used in the film, Timberline has fully embraced its Shining legacy. #historicbuildings #landscapes #mounthood #mountains #NorthAmerica #Oregon #OverlookHotel #Photography #roadtrips #theshining #TimberlineLodge #Travel #UnitedStates
Grand Teton National Park - August, 2017 Chapel of the Transfiguration (upper left) #ChapeloftheTransfiguration #chapels #GrandTetonNationalPark #historic #landscapes #MormonRow #mountains #nationalparks #NorthAmerica #Photography #roadtrips #Travel #UnitedStates #Wyoming
Grand Teton National Park - August, 2017 Mormon Row: T.A. Moulton Barn #architecture #barns #GrandTetonNationalPark #historic #landscapes #MormonRow #Moulton #mountains #nationalparks #NorthAmerica #Photography #roadtrips #Travel #UnitedStates #Wyoming
Grand Teton National Park - August, 2017 Bird overlooking Andy Chambers Homestead on Mormon Row. #birds #animals #GrandTetonNationalPark #historic #homesteads #MormonRow #nationalparks #NorthAmerica #Photography #roadtrips #Travel #UnitedStates #Wyoming
Grand Teton National Park - August, 2017 Mormon Row: Clark & Veda Moulton Homestead #architecture #GrandTetonNationalPark #historic #homesteads #landscapes #MormonRow #Moulton #mountains #nationalparks #NorthAmerica #Photography #roadtrips #Travel #UnitedStates #Wyoming
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