August 28, 1996

Day 14 - West Thumb to Upper Falls, Yellowstone


"At 8:30 o'clock the morning following our arrival we left for the Grand Canyon. The road, with the exception of a few sandy places here and there was very good. The wheeling along the lakeside was especially enjoyable, as we rapidly skimmed along, inhaling the fresh, invigorating breeze wafted [sic] from the water.
Between the Thumb and the Lake Hotel we saw four deer standing in the wagon road. One of the soldiers and myself got within thirty feet of two of them.
At 11:50 A.M., the Lake Hotel was reached. We stopped over one hour during which I took a number of kodak views, including a bear on a bicycle and two bear "inspecting" the corps.
We resumed our journey about 1 P.M., passing Mud Volcano, through Hayden Valley, then the Crater Hills and other points of more or less interest. The soldiers' station near Upper Yellowstone Falls was reached at 3 P.M. Stacking our wheels we at once began to get ready for dinner. While washing my hands and face I accidently knocked over a board on which was resting my West Point class ring. The same soldier who made the smoke rings at the Thumb chanced to be standing near by. Immediately picking up the ring and handing it to me, he said: "Lieutenant, you aught er let me weah dat ring, anyhow." To which I replied, "Why, Forman, if people saw you wearing this ring they would think you were a West Point graduate," whereupon grinning from ear to ear, he answered, "Oh, Lawd, how dey'd be mistakin!"
After dinner we visited the Upper Falls. An enormous body of foaming water madly leaps over a precipice of 100 feet, then strikes the rocks below and rebounds thirty feet or more, forming a series of mist-clouds that gracefully float to the top of the surrounding walls. This picture, seen under any conditions, is, indeed, beautiful.
Its beauty, however, is much enhanced if the sun is shining on the falls, when there appears in the white mist-clouds a rainbow whose iridescence is a vision."

- Lt. James A. Moss, Military Cycling in the Rocky Mountains, pg. 35-37

No comments: