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Sep 25

West Thumb Geyser Basin: Yellowstone Lake

West Thumb GeyserThe West Thumb Geyser Basin is located on the banks of Yellowstone Lake just north of Grant Village where the South Entrance Road and the Grand Loop Road meet. Though it is one of the smaller geyser basins in Yellowstone National Park its ideal location, having the vast Yellowstone Lake as its backdrop, makes it one of the more scenic geothermal spots in Yellowstone.Colorful SpringWhile the chances of having this scenic area all to yourself are slim to none, the West Thumb Geyser Basin is a lot less crowded than other geothermal hot spots like Mammoth Hot Springs and the Upper Geyser Basin, the home of Old Faithful. West Thumb, both times we have been there, always seemed to have a more laid back feel to it.  Maybe because of its lake setting or the fact that hundreds of people are not milling around waiting for a geyser to go off, but either way I found West Thumb Geyser Basin to be a lot more relaxing than other places in the park.Geyser BasinDespite its smaller size the West Thumb Geyser Basin provides the opportunity to see a variety of thermal activity. There are mud pots, hot springs, vents, and a series of geysers located in Yellowstone Lake itself.  Some of the more famous geothermal features here are Fishing Cone where mountain men could fish from the cone, catch one, and then cook it in the boiling water without taking it off the line.  The other two well-known features are Black Pool and Abyss Pool though the lower water temperatures over the last few decades have changed their colors, but in both cases for the better.Geyser on the LakeIn our opinion, the West Thumb Geyser Basin is one of the three best geothermal areas in Yellowstone National Park and is a ‘do not miss’ on any trip to the park. The boardwalk trail around the area is less than a mile and rated as an easy trail so it is suitable for people of all ages.  An hour or less is all you will need for this Yellowstone gem.West ThumbRemember that you are in wild country and it can be dangerous if you do not use common sense and sound judgment. Not only are the animals wild but so is the land and getting too close to either can make a great vacation go sour and even be deadly real quick. Animals will protect themselves, their area, and young while the geothermal areas are fragile and dangerous so stay on assigned paths. If you use caution and are prepared Yellowstone will be a great life experience and please leave it just as you found it so the next person can enjoy. Happy Travels!!!

To read our reviews of other things to see or do in Yellowstone National Park click hereReflections Hot SpringWest Thumb Geyser Basin
Located just north of Grant Village
Small Geyser and Spring Area
Less than an hour

For more information about Yellowstone National Park visit their website at http://www.nps.gov/yell/index.htm

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