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food and travel experiences

Third Largest Hot Spring in The World

Karla

 

GRAND PRISMATIC SPRING

The largest hot spring in the United States and third largest in the world is here in Yellowstone. It is located in the Midway Geyser Basin, which is 22mi (35km) from the west entrance. The beautiful colors of the spring are so vibrant. It has a temperature of 160°F (70°C) and not as hot as the other hot springs I've seen in Yellowstone. Due to the steam, I was unable to see the striking colors of the spring. I went around sunset time. 

 
 

EXCELSIOR GEYSER POOL

Before it was a hot spring, this was an active geyser that erupted frequently reaching as high as 100ft (30m) up. Due to its inactivity, it is now a hot spring with a temperature of 192°F (88°C). This is one of my favorite hot springs in Yellowstone because of the clear turquoise water. 

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Midway Geyser Basin
Geothermal Spots (Map)

 

Lower Geyser Basin: See all The Hydrothermal Features

Karla

 

Lower Geyser Basin is located about 20mi (32km) from the west entrance of Yellowstone. It has the most thermal features scattered in the area. Here, you'll find mud pots, geysers, pools, hot springs and fumaroles. 

It's an easy walk around the Fountain Paint Pot Trail. There were some areas I was unable to see visibly because of the steam coming from the geothermal spots. 

 
 

SILEX SPRING

The colors of this spring are so vibrant and the most visible compared to the others. It has a temperature of 193°F (89°C). This is one of my favorite hot spring in Yellowstone. 

This place gets crowded and parking can be difficult.
I would recommend putting this as the first places to see in Yellowstone. 

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Lower Geyser Basin
Geothermal Spots (Map)

 

Upper Geyser Basin: Largest Concentration of Geysers in The World

Karla

 

Upper Geyser Basin has the largest concentration of geysers in the world. It is located about 28mi (45km) from the west entrance of Yellowstone. This is also where you'll find the popular, Old Faithful Geyser. It has regular eruptions that goes up to 185 feet (56 m). A schedule of the eruptions is located inside the Visitor Center or you can patiently wait in front of it, where tons of seating is available.

The Visitor Center is the only area that I found that had reliable WiFi. 

Maps and a clear pathway is provided, which makes it easy to explore the two square miles area. Here you'll find several thermal features including: spouting geysers, hot springs and steaming fumaroles.

This is where I also shot at night and got a chance to see the northern lights. It was amazing because it never (rarely) occurs in this part of the world and it was so unexpected. My only intention was to see the milky way and with that, I got to experience this.

 

BLUE STAR SPRING

Four gallons per minute of water discharges from the spring. Its name derived from the star-like formation around the edge of the pool. It has a temperature of 192°F (88°C).

SPASMODIC GEYSER

Two craters make up the geyser and is named because of its erratic eruptions. Irregular eruptions occur from both craters and can go up to 15 feet (4 m) high. It has a temperature of 198°F (92°C). 

 

CRESTED POOL

A neighbor of the Castle Geyser, this is the largest and hottest spring in the Upper Geyser Basin with a temperature of 199°F (93°C) and it boils continuously. The deep blue color and clarity of the water made it i the most beautiful hot spring I found in this area. 

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Upper Geyser Basin
Geothermal Spots (Map)

 

5 Tips Surviving Your First Time Shooting at Night to Sunrise

Karla

 

PICK A SPOT

When shooting at night, it is best to research a spot with minimal light prior to shooting. It will just make the process easier. I chose the Upper Geyser Basin where Old Faithful is located because it was a familiar area and wasn't pitch black (I'm a little scared of the dark). Going with a friend that has experience in shooting at night will make you feel more comfortable as well. 

CAMERA GEAR

Ensure that all camera gear (i.e. tripod) is with you. If you have a mirrorless camera like me, you know that the battery life is horrible. Charge those batteries and have back ups.

 
 

CAFFEINE & SNACKS

You'll get tired, sleepy and even cranky. I shot the milky way and northern lights at around 2am, then sunrise was at 5am. I found that snacks kept me awake. So, load up on that caffeine and snacks.

THE ESSENTIALS

It is freezing at night; especially if you decide to get some snooze in the car while waiting for sunrise. Layers is your best friend! A long scarf helps your face warm up and gloves definitely helps when you are shooting. Bring blankets for extra warmth too!

 
 

TRIAL & ERROR

A perfect shot is not done in one take. It's a lot of trial and error. Patience is also the key. Once you get the hang of the settings on your camera, you can play around and even use a flashlight to "paint" the foreground. 

 

Explore Northern Thailand by Scooter

Karla

 

It's no secret that the best way to explore Thailand is by scooter. You can go wherever you'd like and stop whenever you want - plus, it's cheap! Chiang Mai is a beautiful city and much more, the temples, pagodas and stupas are amazing. 

 

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Wat Phrathat Doi Suthep

 

Doi Suthep is located up in the mountains about 30 minutes from the city-center of Chiang Mai. It is one of the most busiest temples I've been to. There are tons of food stalls and locals selling all kinds of goods, from clothing to souvenirs right outside of the temple. Be prepared to climb 309 steps to reach the entrance. There's an entry fee, but you can also enter through the walkway from the right side, near the restrooms.

I was in awe as I entered the pagoda. The golden structures are so mesmerizing that I couldn't stop admiring the beauty. 

 
 

Wat Suan Dok is located in the city-center of Chiang Mai. The white washed mausoleums attracted me to visit the site, until I realized they were structures that housed cremation ashes of people from the royal family in Chiang Mai. Nevertheless, it was a nice change from Doi Suthep. I was basically the only one there aside from the monks and locals working.