YELLOWSTONE 5

You know you are entering a special place when you suddenly see these 
three icons; the Roosevelt Arch made of stone, the attractively 
colorful sign announcing that you are entering the Yellowstone 
National Park, and the northern gate to actually enter the park.

The Roosevelt arch, constructed under the supervision of the United 
State Army at Fort Yellowstone, is a modern day mystery because the 
designer remains unknown.  Robert Reamer, who designed the Old 
Faithful Inn and Nels Ness, an equally famous architect are both 
credited with the design but that precise documentation cannot be 
located.   I guess it really does not matter who specifically designed 
the arch, it remains a picturesque landmark.

The Roosevelt arch was constructed under the supervision of the United 
States Army at Fort Yellowstone and the cornerstone was laid down by 
President Theodore Roosevelt on April 24, 1903.  The archway was built 
at the north entrance, which was the first major entrance for 
Yellowstone.

President Roosevelt was visiting Yellowstone on vacation during 
construction and was asked to place the cornerstone for the arch, 
which then took his name. The cornerstone that Roosevelt laid covered 
a time capsule that contains a Bible, a picture of Roosevelt, local 
newspapers, and other items. Several thousand people visited Gardiner 
for the dedication, including John F. Yancey, who subsequently caught 
a chill and died in Gardiner as a result of his illness.

President Roosevelt never returned to Yellowstone to view the finished 
product. The arch is inscribed with a phrase from the legislation 
establishing Yellowstone National Park: "For the benefit and enjoyment 
of the people."

We enjoyed some of the most unbelievable landscapes as we traveled 
southbound through Yellowstone, the mountain scenes are so magnificent 
that they are difficult to describe.  Sometimes the highway seems 
endless and then again there are passages that are just cleared away 
enough for the traffic to pass through.  The craggy rocks and colorful 
wildflowers scatter the landscape and it is filled with masses of 
water and wild animals wandering around paying no attention to the 
heavy traffic and countless tourists.

"Yellowstone National Park is nearly 3,500 square miles wilderness 
recreation area atop a volcanic hot spot.  Mostly in Wyoming, the park 
spreads into parts of Montana and Idaho too.  Yellowstone features 
dramatic canyons, alpine rivers, lush forests, hot springs and gushing 
geysers, including its most famous, Old Faithful.  Itís also home to 
hundreds of animal species, including bears, wolves, bison, elk and 
antelope. "

"Yellowstone Lake is one of the largest high-elevation lakes in North 
America and is centered over the Yellowstone Caldera, the largest 
super volcano on the continent. " According to my research, the 
caldera is considered to be a dormant volcano but experts say that it 
has erupted with tremendous force several times over the last two 
million years.

Over half of the geysers in the world are located in Yellowstone 
National Park to include the most famous, Old Faithful.  Our adventure 
continues next with the story of visiting Old Faithful.


 

 

Brenda S. Brown 

 

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