Yellowstone National Park: Old Faithful

Next up on our road trip was Jellystone Yellowstone National Park. Home to the majority of the world’s geysers, Yellowstone was established by President Grant on March 1, 1872 as our country’s first national park. This novel concept of a public park open to all spurred a movement to preserve and protect nature for future generations. Beauty which we all get to enjoy today!




Yellowstone is home to over 10,000 geothermal features and 1,283 geysers, of which, 465 are active annually. Interestingly,  Old Faithful is neither the tallest or largest geyser in the park, titles which belong to Steamboat Geyser. However, the popularity of Old Faithful can be attributed to its predictability (it is one of the most predictable features on planet Earth), high frequency of eruptions, and easy access. The park tracks activity around the clock and, very conveniently, provides the time of the next eruption!




Even still, Charles Darwin was growing rather impatient. Luckily there was  a friendly park ranger around who gave a very informative and humorous talk about the park. Meltdown averted!


Soon, we started seeing the first billows of steam rising through the air… and then BOOM!


According to Wikipedia. each eruption can  spray 3,700 to 8,400 gallons of boiling water to a height of 106 to 185 feet, lasting  1.5 to 5 minutes. Of note, in 1938, the ranger Harry Woodward discovered the mathematical relationship between the duration and interval of the eruptions. This discovery is what allows the rangers to accurately predict the time of the eruptions today!


It was really quite spectacular to witness one of nature’s finest performances. It was easy to imagine generations of visitors taking in the spectacle of Old Faithful and the other geysers and being in awe of such sights. I would highly recommend visiting a geyser or two during your trip to Yellowstone!

6 Comments on “Yellowstone National Park: Old Faithful”

    • Thanks Peggy! Believe it or not, that last shot was taken with my old iPhone 4S – the others were taken with my real camera. Go figure!

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