Turns out Yellowstone is actually a volcanic hotspot, and last time it erupted some 650,000 years ago it covered half the U.S. in volcanic ash. And it is still very much alive, as bulging and surging beneath the ground is enough magma to push the ground up to an elevation 2,000 feet higher than the surrounding land. Which is probably why it might snow here tomorrow on the first day of June.
In some spots where rainwater and melted snow seep through the earth, the magma heats it up and spews it back out along with other gases, creating the geothermal features Yellowstone is famous for.
Enjoy some free geology porn from our first day in the park, as well as some funny shit we encountered along the way:
"I think the term 'continental breakfast' is misleading. It doesn't sound like it should mean 'shitty,' but it means 'shitty.'" A., Travelodge in Rapid City, South Dakota
Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone
"Do we get a free sample of gold?" - little boy in Mt. Rushmore Cave
Potential smallest town ever: Emblem, Wyoming, with an official population of 10
Tomorrow we visit Old Faithful and Mammoth Hot Springs. And we eat more Montana huckleberry ice cream, because dammit, that shit is good.