A Hike to Uncle Tom’s Trail

by Karen on August 27, 2014

in Travel

Uncle Tom’s Trail is a hard trail to take but I wanted to – I guess I wanted to prove to myself that I could do it – the last time I took it was when the kids were little – last time we came Mike did it by himself because I had bursitis in my hips pretty bad and I knew I couldn’t do it.  What does this entail – walking down a trail then 328 steps!! And back up of course.


The stairs are broken up – you don’t do them all at once – trail, steps, trail then lots of steps.  Places to stop and rest those shaky legs as often as you want to.



This trail goes to the upper falls of the Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone



The opposite side away from the falls.


We did it and we are still breathing!  Now to climb back up!! oh my talk about wobbling legs.


A little critter trying to get my snack – nope you don’t get it from me I need all the energy I can get.


Yes time to tackle those steps – made it – and then drove looking at things in the park on the way back to the campground.


the buffalo halted traffic like usual!



Two motorcycle riders step back from their bikes to give this big guy a little more room – I think I would have stayed on them and kept going! – this guy just kept rambling on down the road not paying attention to anyone.



All Kinds of Sights from Yellowstone

by Karen on August 26, 2014

in Travel

We have seen so much it is always hard to decide what photos to share – I take so many – I love the water shots, dead trees, flowers and of course the animals.  We saw Grizzly Bears 3 days in a row in the same area, they might be the same bear but they might not – who can tell.  This last day that we were in the park though we saw an amazing sight.  Two wolves – a white and a black wanted a meal that a grizzly had – a buffalo – I don’t know if it was hunted by the bear attacked or what but it was on the ground and the grizzly wanted to eat but the wolves wanted it too.  Mike got some photos and then a couple that were near by with a telescope called us over to look close up – wow – that was neat, I barely got anything with my camera   To the left on the photo the dark spot is a black wolf – the white is a white wolf – near the white spot is a  brown spot that is the buffalo down and the grizzly on top of it!  Take my word for it LOL.


Here is one of Mike’s photo – white wolf being chased off by the grizzly

Part of the campground with  campfire smoke in the distant.




A rushing river


Yellowstone has wonderful walkways by rivers and throughout the park to keep visitors safe and from trampling all over the plants and ruining things.


Steam all over the place


I thought this tree was kind of cool – look closely at the center of the tree


All twisted up into a loop – anyway I thought it was kind of neat.



Old Faithful and Other Sites

by Karen on August 25, 2014

in Travel

You can’t go to Yellowstone National Park without seeing Old Faithful.  Usually in the past we find out that we have to wait an hour or more before she goes off – this time as we were walking up from the parking lot we could see the crowd gathering and see a little spurt here and there – we got there just in time with no wait!


Old Faithful Lodge from the side view – built in 1909


The four story fireplace inside the log structure.  Quite a unique structure.


Desk scattered throughout the main hall ways – this is where we go to get computer time – sometimes you get a good signal on your phones and sometimes not so good – we got in a little computer time, scheduled some blog posts, checked on some on-line bills (our phone connection is secure I don’t recommend not using a secure connection when traveling and checking your accounts and bills on line) answered a bunch of emails and after an hour or so got up and left – back to seeing the sights!


In the lobby they always have a resident artist working – this guy – didn’t catch the name was sketching a bald eagle.


Old fashioned windows throughout the building.


balcony on the second floor – even if you are not a guest of the hotel you can wander and sit enjoying the view.  It is open to all.


If you wish to watch Old Faithful blast off from the comfort of the balcony you can.


If you ever get the chance to stay at Old Faithful Lodge for even one night it is worth it.  We did years ago when the kids were with us back when they were little – it was fun for one night – pricey for more than one night Smile


Steaming Pools and Waterfalls

by Karen on August 24, 2014

in quilts

We started out Saturday (16th)  at one of the Geyser areas for a 1.6 mile walk – it was chilly when we left the campground- only 39 degrees! But it warmed up quickly.

One of the steaming pools – this walk is almost completely on boardwalk.



This one is such a pretty dark turquoise color and very deep in the center,


A small geyser – Old Faithfull well be seen tomorrow I think.


We took a drive over to Mesa Falls Overlook a ways  from the campground – we were gone all day!  It is beautiful and huge.  This is outside the park



And of course the trail going to the falls had plenty of steps – this is on the Idaho side outside of the park.


And here is another falls that we saw on our way back into Yellowstone – this is still outside of the park – this is called “Cave Falls” I tried to see if I could do a blog post from my telephone but the signal is so poor most of the time that I haven’t been able to.


We hope to have some computer time at Old Faithful lodge on Sunday – we have had luck in the past there – plenty of tables on 3 floors and usually you can find a quite space – we will use out phone hot spots and hopefully get on line.  I have about 8 post or more written that I hope to get scheduled to share.  We will also see all the Old Faithful sights while we are there and maybe get in a hike also.  Normally we are out take photos and seeing things all day and then in the evenings is our down time which for us means going through photos on our computers and writing posts, reading, sewing (for me)


A Post Out of Order

by Karen on August 23, 2014

in Travel

I thought I would do a post completely out of order of where we are by doing a post in “real time” – for this weekend of August 23-24 we are in Missoula, Montana on our way to Glacier National Park and we have internet service!!– we had been in a pretty rustic campground and intended on staying for 3 nights but after 2 days of cold rain we left and headed to a city campground closer to Glacier National Park.  On Friday night the 22nd we actually had sleet mixed in with the rain it was just too cold and wet for me to enjoy it and there was nothing near by to see – and to wet and cold to do anything other than sit in the camper.   So we moved!  Instead we enjoyed an afternoon shopping and stopping for coffee at a Barnes and Nobles just down the street a short ways.  We got our computers out and got caught up on mail and blogs.

So what does a city campground look like – a lot different than the back to nature ones we have been at LOL and of course a lot more expensive.  Here is out set up.  Only 56 degrees today so we didn’t set up the shade awning and we didn’t put the chairs out as it was raining off and on all day.


Another angle


One of my readers from Finland has a nice photo blog called  Sartenada’s Photo Blog, he and his wife travel a lot and he takes fantastic photos of the artic area – he mentioned that in his country our camper would be considered large – so I took some photos of campers to show him that our camper is small compared to a lot on the road Smile

this one pulls a garage with them!


this one has a truck pull it over the bed of the truck – we used to have one similar but it was too big for us and we wanted something smaller – we only had one this size for about a year.


This 5th wheel is huge!


And here on the other hand is a small one that pops up into an A frame style.  Out here while we travel the west we have seen a lot of campers the same size as ours – but at home we rarely see them – most have big ones.


Look at that huge truck that pulls this one – these are streets of campers here.




Pretty flowers though!


So now you see perhaps why we like the rustic campgrounds.  But these are nice when you have nasty weather, you want to refill your grocery’s you are close to the stores, there is laundry facilities, shopping malls, bookstores ect – good for a couple days!  (I totally understand some people have the very big campers if they live in them full time but we do not so a small one suits us just fine)

From the Quilter’s Community on line here is an interesting article on labels.

Now tonight I will put a movie in to watch and get my quilting out!

Don’t forget to check out the mini classes at Craftsy if you want to take a short class for free – they always have some for free!


Well we got to Yellowstone National Park on the 15th.  The campground is way busier than I like and crowded of course – you do not have large campsites and we are usually out so much daytime that we rarely set up much  outside – usually tired by time we get back from running around all day.

The last couple evenings I decided to go ahead and get a Lemoyne Star block done and put the tumbler’s aside for a couple days.  The Star block went together really quickly.  If I remember right I have enough fabric cut out for 40 blocks to put together for a wall hanging.  I don’t think it will be more than about 40”square – estimating – with sashing a little bigger.  If you wish to see some hexies though stop over at Angie’s blog A Quilters Readers Garden and skip on around the blogs I have linked my tumblers there as she said that was ok too.

Here it is ready to work on.


I put this much together one day – these are 4.5 inch blocks.


Not pressed, I don’t have electricity at this campground and I doubt I will take time to press until sometime next week or – I feel it turned out straight though even if it doesn’t look like it here.  I didn’t think to bring a rotary cutter to trim now a square ruler so that will wait until we get home.


This shot taken through the window of the camper on our way to the campsite – the buffalo were out full force to great us.


Big things aren’t they!


And shortly afterwards – not 30 minutes into the park there was a traffic jam which means only one thing in Yellowstone – a animal of some sort has been spotted – we parked inquired to the nearest people – a grizzly bear has been spotted on the other side of the rode up in the hills – there is a ranger out in the area of field where people have congregated to look.  A ranger almost always seems to show up quickly when a bear has been spotted to keep stupid people from getting too close.  Seeing as he was out there Mike got the zoom lens ready on his camera and out there with the crowd – knowing to stay where ever the ranger says to stay – the bear was quite a distance as even with his zoom this is the best he got:

Here is the ranger and the bear (bear is further away than it looks)


see that hump close to the head – grizzly’s have that.



I do wish it had been closer so we could have gotten better photos – we need to get Mike a better zoom lens!  (I do not mean dangerously close!!! I just mean a little closer than the 3 or 4 football field’s away that it was to give you an example of distance – I stayed right next to the car even at that distance LOL)


An eagles nest up high in the tree I believe.


A good size deer the antlers were really neat and you could see the felt on them




Did you know Craftsy offers free mini classes?  they have quite a few of them on various subjects – quilting, baking, stamping, gardening, drawing, Color Theory – ect – and they are FREE!! I have several of them and really enjoy these mini classes because sometimes I have the attention span of a gnat!! (not to insult a gnat LOL but really sometimes I don’t want to sit for hours )