Quick Yellowstone overnight, Rescue Creek


Nov 23, 2015
I spent Thursday night at site 1A2, just off the Rescue Creek Trail.

I started at the Blacktail Creek Trailhead.

It was kind of cloudy, and projected to rain and be cold-ish, but I really wanted to do this. So I put on my pack and headed toward the trail.

I hadn't made it out of the parking lot when a couple rolled down their window and asked me if this was the Blacktail Plateau Road. They wanted to hike on that. I gave then directions, and made it past the parking lot.


About 100 feet later, I chatted with a pair of day hiking Xantera employees. One was super enthusiastic. The other, not so much. I think I talked the first one into trying an overnight. Preachin' the word, as it were.

I got to the top of the hill and headed to the left.


I wandered along. Being at least a little afraid of bears (also wolves, mountain lions, moose, elk, wolverines, rattlesnakes and bigfoot) I hollered about every 10 steps. I've begun impersonating the Swedish Chef from the Muppets... "Bjorne de muff de flurpot de doo." It gives me something to say and modulates my pitch and tone. Heaven knows what the bears think.


I looked at the flank of one nearby hill and thought it looked like the perfect place to spot "A BLACK BEAR! AND SHE'S GOT TWO CUBS!" They were 2-300 yards away, and I don't think she even knew I was there. The cubs were tiny, looking like little dots, until mom decided to hurry into a draw. Then I could see little bodies outstretched to keep up with mom. They disappeared, but I kept my eyes on that area, and pretty soon she,was grazing and the young 'un's were playing in the bushes.


There were flowers blooming. I saw prairie smoke (I think) and louse wort (I think) and these are clematis--virgin's bower ( I think).


I came to a stream which had a sort of bridge over it. The bridge part was a very sturdy log (fully round) held up by a structure made of more logs. It looked like it wI'll still be funational in 100 years, but I was nervous about the round top. I climbed up (it was maybe 2 feet above the water, which was probably 2 feet deep). I used my poles to steady myself, but that had me more concerned than the mother bear had. If I'd fallen, I could have really hurt myself. I was gonna have to think about that.


I'm not sureally what this plant is...Century plant? Monument plant? The little plant in front is the one I'm calling prairie smoke.
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{My phone decided to help with this part of the post. I deleted it. It's not a very smart phone, no matter what it thinks.}
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I wandered on, beside a marsh, and them I came to a post. There was no sign, but there was a rumpled orange cross country marker on the ground. The trail went up, and so did I, even though I had a feeling that my site was to the left a bit, on the little trail by the post.


I climbed past blooming arrowleaf balsamroot (I think) and sage. I began to look ahead and below, toward where I felt the campsite should be. In a bit, there was an area with a batch of elk antlers. The northern range of Yellowstone has many campsites with elk antlers, skulls, and bones. People apparently find them and drag them to camp. ????


I turned back and when I got to the post, I turned onto the trail less traveled and soon I was crossing a little creek and entering the kitchen area of the site.


I had my food hung on the food pole in no time, and headed off to find a nice place to put my tent. I wanted to get it up quickly, as it looked like it was going to rain any minute.

I found a nice spot and had my tent up and stuff safely inside. I headed back to the kitchen and had a snack, and then it started to rain, so I went to my tent to putter with my things.


And to take a nap.

It rained and there was even some thunder and lightening.

After the storm moved off, I ate and looked around the site a little more. There was a glorious srream. And two lakes (small) and a really nice view back up the valley.


It got dark prematurely, as rain set in.

I went to my tent and spent the night in dry comfort. The next morning it was light but still gloomy.

I packed my stuff and headed to the kitchen. It wasn't raining, but you just knew it was going to. I drank my coffee and ate and then loaded my cooking bag into my pack and headed out. It began to rain almost immediately. I had brought a cagoule, and it kept me dry.

I kept looking for the bear and cubs, but didn't see them.

I came to the bridge thing.

I'd decided that I should walk through the water rather than risk falling and breaking something--like my neck.


I know, it doesn't look like much, but it was a big, round, slick log. I walked up to the bridge and checked both sides. I chose the left side and sloshed in. It wasn't startlingly cold. There were rocks on the bottom for a bit and then I had to take two steps in ooze. Squish. I almost lost my shoe, but it stuck with me.

After that it was smooth sailing. I climbed up to the top of the hill, and then the wind got me. The far side of the hill was exposed to the wind and it was kind of nasty. There are three antelope bedded down just over the hill and they saw me and bolted.


It didn't take b long to get back to the trailhead. I'd managed my first trip of the year, and gotten to a new (to me) campsite. I did end up taking the 5 hour route home instead of the 2 hour route. There was snow on Dunraven and Sylvan Passes, and I probaby would have had snow on Dead Indian Pass, too. So I went the long way... I can hardly wait to go back!
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Glad you didn't have a close encounter with the cubs and momma, but exciting that you got to see them at a distance!
Everything looked so lovely and peaceful. That is my type of weather. Thanks for sharing!
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Nice one! Looks like an awesome area! That was quite the set of antlers in your site! Sounds like you had the right distance from those bears.
Thank you.

I was at a couple of sites last year that had a small herd of antlers and skulls. It's eerie.

I was really happy to see the bear with cubs, and to be far enough away that the mother bear didn't seem to notice my presence.
No need to be in Jellystone. From my HOA manager today:

Dear Rancho Viejo Residents,

I just received an alert from a another Rancho Viejo resident of a black bear sighting on property.The bear was spotted between Mineral Hill and Richards Avenue.

If you see the animal do not attempt to make any contact. Please call the local game warden at (505) 222-4700.

If you encounter a bear on the trail, or in near your home, stop what you are doing and evaluate the situation. Don't panic. Back away slowly, preferably in the direction you came. Walk, don’t run, you CANOT outrun a bear. Keep your eye on the bear at all times. In most cases, the bear will retreat.

If attack seems imminent, stand your ground and make lots of noise. Black bears may just lose interest and walk away.

If the black bear actually attacks, fight back. Use anything and everything as a weapon- rocks, sticks, fists, and your teeth. Aim your blows on the bears face- particularly around the eyes and snout.

Watch your pets while outside and do not leave them out for extended periods of time alone.

Due to the dry winter and spring, food supplies for the bears might be scarce, causing them to come down from the mountains in search of food. Do not leave pet food and water outside as this may draw bears closer to your home.

Thank you and please take care.
No No No - what he means is, he's fevered. :stomp:

Fevered: feeling or displaying an excessive degree of nervous excitement, agitation, or energy.

I dunno, maybe he's both...after all, he's Deputy Scatman.
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He's got the fever man. Y'all hear that? FEVER!:hot:
No No No - what he means is, he's fevered. :stomp:

Fevered: feeling or displaying an excessive degree of nervous excitement, agitation, or energy.

I dunno, maybe he's both...after all, he's Deputy Scatman.

Thanks, now I've got a Peggy Lee song floating through the back of my mind, stuck on repeat. I'll get you both for this. :)
Yellowstone Fever

Never knew how much I love you, never knew how much I care
When you put your big grizzly arms around me, I get a fever that's so hard to bear
You give me fever, when you maul me, fever whenever you bite
Fever in the the morning, fever all through the night. :help:
Very glad for you that you had this brief trip. Even a short time in Yellowstone is great.

Your post made me so envious! Being unemployed (6 months), my Yellowstone Fever is both dormant and, occasionally, raging (the same can be said for my Canyonlands Fever). Unable to travel, I suffice with Yellowstone videos on YouTube and books about others' having adventures there, and I feel within me a deep yearning, a need, even, just to see the Hayden Valley, to breathe deeply of its fresh air and to feel the breeze as it comes across the open vista and brushes against my skin. The sense memory is strong even in my suburban apartment. I am pining just for the sound of LeHardy Rapids, to see Artist Point, Trout Lake, and Blacktail Plateau and to hike among the lodge pole pines or in the open air of the Lamar Valley. It’s hard for me to understand people who don’t need experiences like this.

But, weather permitting, the minute someone offers me a position (anticipating this soon) I will pack my camp stuff in the car and head west immediately, hopefully to scratch the itch for at least a week before reporting for duty. After two years away, just driving through the east entrance will be such a tonic.

So, ithout that chance right away, I decided for mental health reasons that I needed a bag night, the perfect restorative, and tonight I booked a spot at a camp site, although only 25 miles from urban Milwaukee, and, to be sure, nothing like an evening under the Yellowstone sky, but it will be quiet and on the edge of a forest, and I will be in a tent for the first time in months.
Good luck with the job search. Not much worse than having the time but no money to go out and pick up a bag night.
I admire our own @Kmatjhwy (anyone seen her around lately?), and @LarryBoy and others who have quit their jobs or are living very frugal lives to be able to get out into the countryside they love. I understand that not everyone can do that because of other commitments, and that not everyone actually even wants to do that, but I do understand the yearning for wild places, like @Ben disappearing into the Alaska wilds for as long as he can. I myself have to be careful to not overstep my own meager savings and thereby end up stranded somewhere broke (let it be north of the Arctic Circle if I am, though, preferably in summer). Wishing @MVS all the best of luck in the job search. (And your Avatar photo at Mesa Arch is truly exceptional.)
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