After leaving our car at the upper TH near Petrified Tree Marc dropped Adam and I off on the lower portion of The Blacktail Plateau. This is my favorite track in Yellowstone. It features gorgeous scenery, ample wildlife, rolling terrain and has a backcountry feel.

Today’s weather was more stable with mostly cloudy skies, light intermittent snow and a few patches of sunshine. The weather was colder as well and our skis did not stick to the fresh three inches of snow that had fallen overnight. We broke trail since the groomer hadn’t been by in awhile, but it wasn’t difficult. A few places had deep drifts and other areas had pavement exposed. These areas were short and few though. They could easily be navigated. We saw elk near the track and signs of coyotes. No bison or wolves like last winter. There were no other people around today.

It was only midday when we completed the traverse so we skis up and down the Petrified Tree Road to kills a little time. Then we drove the road to Cooke-City stopping at The Lamar Valley sign. Here we put on our snowshoes and walked to nowhere into the valley. It should be noted that only people that are good at navigation and understand land features should attempt this. You have to have good visibility of your surroundings at all times and use land features to make this happen. Never come over the top of a hill you cannot see around… there might be a hidden bison! Luckily, all the bison we saw were far off. We also saw signs of red foxes in the snow.

On our way back to the Buffalo Ranch we spotted three coyotes traveling across Lamar Valley.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *