Sunday, July 08, 2007

Yellowstone Lake

Some of my favorite gravel beaches are these barriers on Yellowstone Lake. I saw them first by accident about a dozen years ago - although my recollection is that the lake level was considerably higher. I believe on that trip, the beaches at the north end were almost submerged, whereas they seemed just the opposite this year. I'll have to see if I have some pictures from back then.

Although the lake is ultimately volcanic in origin - it fills a large part of the Yellowstone Caldera - these beaches are built of glacial sediments. The pictures include the north end near Sedge's Creek, a beach south of Bridge Bay, and a site on the western shore north of West Thumb. Maps and online aerial imagery show many more elegant barriers around the lake, each probably jealously guarded by its own grizzly bear.

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