Yellowstone – West Thumb and another Elk Stag

Here’s the final post from our visit with MM & Pa. What a happy week it was. We saw a lot!

At the local museum that’s at the old railroad station, we all enjoyed the old stage coaches:

We were all shocked to learn how park visitors and rangers used to feed the bears out of their car windows and also sit around on bleachers to watch them eat out of the dumpsters and different platforms. The park used bear comics for many years to entice people to the park and it was advertised more like a zoo/ circus than the national parks as we know them today. So crazy! I’m so glad for all we’ve learned as a country these last 50 years in regards to wildlife and wilderness care.

The famous “Snaggletooth” bear had a great story and I was sad to see he was shot and stuffed there:

He had a snaggle tooth out one side, most of his left ear was gone, he was blind in one eye, and weighed over 1000 pounds! Each evening, he’d eat at the city dump in West Yellowstone with many onlookers enjoying the show especially how all the other bears would scram when he came to the scene. One night, two cowardly hunters came to the dump and killed him during his dinner. The museum was small but a good stop on the one rainy day we had. We also enjoyed the IMax theatre all to ourselves that day!

For my parents’ last day in the park, we made it to the east side to enjoy Yellowstone Lake and the West Thumb area. It was overcast but still pretty and RR loved the thermals of course.

He loved the ones right on the lake:

And there was a group of elk (but no stag) super close to the boardwalk!

This girl is saying “omgosh lady. 25 yards.”

On the way “home” we got a great gift of being at the right place at the right time as a stag elk came down from the forest! All his ladies but one were down the hill and had crossed the river… and then he emerged… prince of the forest!

He is so gorgeous? royal? majestic? …. what’s the word !?

And sometimes funny:

We had a pretty close view as he got himself all attractive for the ladies. Which apparently means he pees and tosses dirt and grass and anything all over himself. “Me big man. Me can get dirty and stinky. Me use my big antlers to get dirty. Me attractive.”

But the ladies just weren’t into it. Maybe next week. So he laid down.

The last lady crossed over the river away from him and he sat there watching all the people watching him.

There were so many people all around him so he couldn’t find a place to cross the river. I’m surprised the rangers weren’t telling the people to hide themselves so he could cross where he wanted. Eventually he went in.

But the last we saw, he had turned around and gone back up into the hills. It bothers me when humans interfere.

But from what I’ve heard… when the girls are ready , those guys will successfully attack anything that’s in their way … including 2-leggeds and their cars.

It was a great last night in the park and we were grateful for so many happy experiences that week!

The kiddos loved pool and hotel time w MM:

And their special time with Pa. Bike riding and playground time:

I’m grateful that Pa did so much driving!

And that they both came so far to be with us again . We are truly blessed to have them. 🙂

2 thoughts on “Yellowstone – West Thumb and another Elk Stag

  1. Pingback: NC – Smoky Mountains National Park – Rookie Roadsters

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