East Berlin, Pennsylvania
October 13, 2006
Grand Prismatic Spring is about 160 feet deep and roughly 250x380 feet in size. It's the largest in Yellowstone and the third largest in the world (meaning I'd REALLY like to see the other two in New Zealand). The colors are always astounding, vivid turquoise blue in the center and gradually changing to lighter blue, green, and even oranges or reds towards the edges. People can, and do, stand there and gaze at the sheer beauty in awe. It's difficult to leave.
Excelsior Geyser is also huge, roughly 275x325 feet, and always bathed in steam from the hot temps—and always blue. There's a boardwalk on different sides, so pick the one upwind to see it better (due to steam flowing downwind). They say it used to be the biggest geyser till it mainly stopped erupting back in the late 1800s. It CAN erupt again (it did in 1985), though not as high as before, so we were hopeful but not terribly disappointed, as the sheer beauty of both is a pleasure to our senses that's indescribable. If you get your "highs" from traveling (as we do), this one is hard to beat.
Turquoise Pool and Opal Pool are smaller, but worth a look as you walk around. Their beauty mainly gets dwarfed by their nearby cousins.
There is some elevation change to get up to these springs, but it's not much, and it's totally worth it for everyone. Even young kids were remarking on the colors and sizes, perhaps for less of an attention span than adults, but nonetheless, they took notice. Expect crowds here, but not nearly as many people as at Old Faithful. For those who choose to skip it, it truly is their loss. I'm not advocating stopping here INSTEAD of Old Faithful... I'm saying it's worth it for both. Firehole Lake Drive and West Thumb were our other "favorites" for thermal features.
From journal 2006 Trip Pt 2 - WY - Devil's Tower to Yellowstone