How To Spend An Anniversary

20 March 2020 by 1der Girl

On this day two years ago, I tore my ACL. I really, really wish we were skiing today, but oh well...


Even though we figured today was our last day of minimal crowds before the weekend throngs arrive, we decided to stay “in” and do some housekeeping. This meant organizing Beastie after going up to the visitor’s center for WIFI and water replenishment.

We were in front of the infamous bathroom when we saw a man wearing a bright yellow sweatshirt with CAL written across.

“Berkeley!,” 1der exclaimed.

Unlike the last people we encountered here, this man and his wife were very pleasant. We spent the next 20 minutes chatting with this nice couple / recent Bozeman transplants who moved there 1.5 years ago after spending decades in Sacramento.

It was great learning about W & K’s move, what it was like to live in Bozeman, and how different their lives were after leaving California. Their son went to school at and now lives and works in Berkeley, so they still have ties to the Bay Area.

Word must be out throughout Montana about the grizzly and the drowned bison because the couple knew about it and were going to check it out.

Happy wildlife viewing!


Once we got up to the Visitor’s Center, I was quite pleased to see the area was still deserted. Yes!!!

From the steps of the Yellowstone Mammoth Visitor's CenterThis view is looking out from the steps of the Mammoth Visitor's Center. This is where we would freeze our you-know-what's-off when we parked ourselves here to access WIFI at the end of every day. Thankfully, the rangers left the access open even though the Visitor's Center was closed indefinitely because of COVID.

Yellowstone Mammoth Visitor's Center

Of course I had to get a pic of the post office.

Yellowstone Mammoth Post Office

... because of the two adorable bears flanking the entrance.

Yellowstone Mammoth Post Office Bear

They are so cute with their colorful and snuggly scarves.

Yellowstone Mammoth Post Office Bear

As we were heading “home,” we saw a big herd of bison on the road a bit past the campground entrance. We went to check it out. They moved before we got there. For the record, we would never approach them.

There wasn’t a place nearby to turn around, so we kept heading down the road to the next turnoff, which was past the Boiling River Hot Springs parking lots. The lots were blocked off and the entire area closed due to COVID. Again, we expressed our gratitude that we went there on Monday and didn’t wait until later in the week. That would have been a HUGE miss.

I was happy to pass this sign, which I saw the other day on our way into the park but didn’t stop. Pretty cool, eh?

45th Parallel

Unfortunately, we didn’t find the time to organize Beastie. Funny how time flies when you’re doing nothing.

As the sun was going down and I was getting dinner ready, we heard a car stop in front of our campsite. A woman’s voice said, “I think that’s them! Hello! Hello!”

I guess it's hard to be incognito with Beastie... 🙃

W & K (the couple from this morning) found us. We were so happy to see them again! They went to see the grizzly and got some great pictures. Luckily for K, he had a real telephoto lens, though my method takes more skill. 🤣

I’m so glad we exchanged information; we look forward to seeing them again either in Montana or in the Bay Area.

Most certainly grateful that all body parts are in tact today. 👏🏼

1der Girl
1der Girl


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