29 April, 2011

A-Z Blogging Challenge: Y Stands For: Yellowstone

Yellowstone was the world's first national park. It was established in 1872, signed into law by Ulysses S. Grant on March 1st. It is a World Heritage Site and designated Biosphere Reserve, with 2.2 million acres, and covers parts of Wyoming, Montana, and Idaho.

(Yellowstone River, Upper Falls. SOURCE)

The name "Yellowstone" came from the Minnetaree (a Native American Indian tribe) word for a river with yellow sandstone bluffs: "Mi tsi a-da-zi". French trappers interpreted this as "Yellow Rock River", and called it "Pierre Jaune" or "Roche Jaune". Lewis and Clark came into contact with the same tribe, and also called it Yellow Rock River.

(Canada Lynx. SOURCE)

Yellowstone National Park is home to several threatened endangered species, including the Canada Lynx, the gray wolf, and the grizzly bear. Some other notable animals are the American bison, bighorn sheep, bobcats, coyotes, elk, moose, mountain lions, mule deer, to name the large ones. 67 mammal species live in the park (the largest concentration in the 48 states), 322 species of birds are recorded (148 of them nesting in the park), 16 species of fish (although 5 of them are non-native), 6 reptile species, and 4 species of amphibians. There are also 7 conifer species, 1,100 native species of plants, 199 non-native species of plants, 186 species of lichens, and 406 species of thermophiles.

The Yellowstone Caldera is the largest supervolcano in North America. It is indeed considered an active volcano, producing half the world's volcanic activity. The caldera has been measured at 55 km (34 miles) by 72 km (45 miles) in size, although a new survey has shown it could extend for up to 640 km (400 mi) east to west.

Three supereruptions have happened in Yellowstone's history--at 2.1 million, 1.3, and 640,000 years ago. The last time Yellowstone exploded, it sent 1,000 cubic km (240 cubic mi) of dust into the air, and if it was to erupt again (supervolcano eruptions are predicted to happen sometime in the future; in fact, we're overdue) it could bury North America in ash and disrupt life around the globe.

They say it won't be happening anytime soon. But, obvious in the recent catastrophes, the prediction of earthquakes, volcanoes, and other natural disasters is shaky at best.




Do you think supervolcano eruptions are something we should be worried about? Do you think Yellowstone will erupt in the near future, or do you think this is just a bunch of pointless speculation?

Also, have you ever been to Yellowstone?

-----The Golden Eagle


Summer Ross said...

Believe it or not I live in Wyoming and have never been there- LOL

Charles Gramlich said...

Lana and my next trip is going to be Yellowstone.

junebug said...

I love Yellowstone. My family went through there several times camping when I was a kid. Love it.

Susan Kane said...

I haven't been to Yellowstone, yet. But, it is top on my list for next trip. Will there be an eruption in the near future? Who knows? If and when it happens, there won't be much left of the middle of the country, and the entire world will have to deal with the ash-winters.

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Yes! I visited with my family when I was a kid. Cool place.

Josh Hoyt said...

I love Yellowstone. The best time to go is in the winter when all the tourists are gone and there are no lines. It is so beautiful.

Michael Offutt said...

I've been to Yellowstone a dozen times or more. It's a great park full of natural beauty for sure. There's lots of stuff to do off the beaten path too if you like to fish.

Reece said...

I really appreciate how much work you put into your posts. It is evident that you do a lot of research, and I think that speaks very highly of you. Keep it up!

Old Kitty said...

Yay for Yellowstone!! One of the places I'd love to see before I'm 50!! Oh yes!! :-) Take care

Shannon O'Donnell said...

I LOVE Yellowstone Park--LOVE it!! Great pics, too. :-)

Lauracea said...

That Canada lynx is an awesome animal. I can imagine the whole place is awesome with all that goes on in there.
Eruptions in the future? The power of Nature is so huge we just don't seem to be able to predict anything - not even the weather - exactly.

Talli Roland said...

Gorgeous photos! I've never been to Yellowstone but I've always wanted to.

Sun Singer said...

Great pictures and information. I love the national parks, but it's been a long time since I've been to Yellowstone (unfortunately).

Thanks for a wonderful letter "Y"

Margo Lerwill said...

Ah, such breathtaking photos. And the lynx is one of my favorite animals. Eruption? Hopefully not before I get to visit.

Kimberly said...

Awesome Y post, especially since we are going in about a month's time. I sure hope it doesn't explode then!

Robyn Campbell said...

I want to get to Yellowstone next year. This year we are going to IRELAND! WOO-HOO

Eagle I love these pics. Especially the one of the Canada Lynx. Beautiful.

Stephen Tremp said...

I didn't think of Yellowstone ... great choice for Y! I've never been there but would like to take a family vacation there. And great new background for your blog .... its very inspiring.

IanBontems said...

Beautiful pictures. I've never been, but I'd love to some day.

laughingwolf said...


have to make a trip there, some day :)

klahanie said...

Hey 'The Eagle,
'Y' thank you for this fascinating info of 'Yellowstone'.
Please correct me if I'm wrong, but isn't that where 'Yogi' and 'Boo Boo', hang out and steal picnic baskets? :)
Have a peaceful and positive weekend.
Kind wishes, shy and humble Gary :)

Angela Felsted said...

I hope it doesn't blow up anytime soon.

Theresa Milstein said...

I'd like to see Yellowstone, especially after seeing those pictures.

Holly Ruggiero said...

I love Yellowstone. I haven't met a National Park I haven't loved, but Yellowstone is remarkable.

Shelley said...

No, I've never been to Yellowstone, and haven't heard of it since reading this post. It looks like such a beautiful place! :)

bluepurpleandscarlett said...

Not sure about the supervolcanos, but it sure is an awesome place! I really hope I can go someday. Thanks for the tour :)

L'Aussie said...

Hi Golden. I was going to do Yellowstone or Yosemite for my Y but thought an American would do it better and you have. Great post, both the history and pics. No, I haven't visited but hope to get there one day.

Thanks for visiting Ypres with me.


A - Z - Y

Lynda R Young said...

I visited Yellowstone National Park once. It's such a gorgeous place. Breath-taking.

Mary Aalgaard said...

No point in worrying, but it does make me nervous sometimes, especially after what happened to Japan. We are all vulnerable to nature's big blow ups. We need to listen to the experts and work together if something does happen. Nice post on Yellowstone - a gorgeous place, indeed. And, thanks for connecting with me!

Stratoz said...

I was fortunate to see Yellowstone on the last big family vacation I went on with my parents. as for being worried, well, it is nothing to laugh at, but I would rather focus my thoughts elsewhere on things I have a slightly more control over

madisonwoods said...

Loved this post about Yellowstone. I've been there years ago and it is still a favorite memory of mine. One day I'd love to go back.

As for the caldera, well, if it blows we'll probably have mass die-off of people, plants and animals and enter another ice age. I can't imagine there's anything that can be done to prevent, stall, or mitigate the damage, so there's no point in worrying about it. If I had a large underground cave system at my disposal, I might be inclined to prepare 'survivalist' style, I guess.

What do you think?

Kathy said...

Awesome posts for the A to Z Challenge. Congratulations on'sticking it out'.
Thanks for stopping by and visiting my blog.
Kathy at Oak Lawn Images

catherinemjohnson said...

Beautiful pictures, it is always so informative coming here.

kelworthfiles said...

No, it seems an interesting place to go, though.

I haven't made it to Yosemite either, but I get the two of them confused.

The Golden Eagle said...

Summer: Well, there are famous places in this area I've never been to. :P

Charles: Awesome!

Junebug: How cool that you got to go there!

Susan: True; if it does erupt, there are going to be much bigger problems than who predicted it and who didn't.

Alex: It certainly sounds cool. :D

Josh: I've seen images of Yellowstone in winter--it looks like a wonderland.

Michael: Lucky! :)

I've never been fishing; but hey, being outside sounds fun enough.

Reece: Thank you!

I try to make sure my facts are correct, and to have verifiable sources behind them; it can't just be Wikipedia all the time. :P

I'll do my best!

Old Kitty: Hope you get the chance to visit the park, then! :)

Shannon: Me, too. :D Have you ever been there?

Glad you liked the pics!

Lauracea: I agree--it is!

Weather is shaky enough; 40% chance of rain, 70% chance of rain, possible precipitation . . . nothing's ever exact. I wonder if it's even possible.

Talli: Me, too. :)

Malcolm: I'm glad you liked them!

I've never been to a national park (that I can remember) but I'd love to visit one sometime.

You're very welcome!

Margo: It's a very interesting animal.

Same here!

Kimberly: Thank you!

I hope you enjoy your visit to Yellowstone. :)

Robyn: Oh, Ireland is a beautiful country! That's so awesome!

Glad you enjoyed the pics!

The Golden Eagle said...

Stephen: Thanks!

Then I hope you get the chance to go sometime!

Er, actually, it's been there for months--I'm glad you like it, though! :)

Ian: Me, too.

Laughingwolf: It sounds like an amazing place. :)

Gary: You're very welcome!

LOL. Yes, that's where they stole picnic baskets! :D

Thank you! I hope you have a great rest-of-the-weekend.

Angela: Yeah, me too!

Theresa: Agreed. :)

Holly: I've never been to a National Park . . . but do I want to!

Shelley: Doesn't it? The land it covers is amazing. :)

Bluepurpleandscarlett: I hope I get to go sometime, too!

You're welcome!

L'Aussie: Thank you!

You're welcome--your post was so interesting to read!

Lynda: You've been there? Awesome. :)

Mary: I agree; if there is a huge disaster running around screaming and panicking and not-listening isn't going to help . . .

Thank you!

You're very welcome; I'm glad I found you!

Stratoz: Nice!

True. There are many other issues that need to be addressed, that can be controlled by people.

Madisonwoods: I'm glad you enjoyed it! :)

I would agree--underground would probably be one of the safer places if there is a massive eruption. It might be traumatic for some people to have to go underground for who knows how long (and I wonder what it would do to humanity as a whole) but it could be one of the more viable options . . .

Kathy: Thank you! :)

You're welcome--I really enjoyed visiting your blog!

Catherine: Glad you liked the pics!

Chris: It does seem like an interesting place; all the wildlife and things to see . . .

They're rather similar in name, aren't they? I used to get them mixed up, too, but then I watched the National Parks by Ken Burns--the history helped. :P

Cally Jackson said...

What amazing photos! I've never heard of a lynx before!

The Golden Eagle said...

Well, now you know what a Canada Lynx looks like. :)

Car Title Loans said...

I've never actually been to Yellowstone, but I've always want to go. There is just so much to see and do, that I wouldn't know where to begin! And, with my luck, that volcano would erupt while I was there.