The author gaining inspiration The author gaining inspiration

Old Faithful Boardwalk

  • April 16, 2019
  • Posted by Ryan Jansen

The Greater Yellowstone regional office sent our first crew of the season into Yellowstone National Park on the 8th of April 2019. On our way into the park we saw coyotes, a bald eagle, and a few groups of bison. We worked for five days removing boardwalk around Old Faithful, starting the second year of a three year process replacing the entire boardwalk around the famous geyser. We all found ourselves filled with gratitude with the opportunity to be in the park when it is so still and quiet. We all agreed that big National Parks can get rather congested mid-season and we generally feel less connected to place when exploring a congested park. It was a memorable week filled with all kinds of weather. Below is a poem of reflection on a week spent in Yellowstone:

A code to a lock
Passed over the phone
Allowed a Rig of Service Term Who-Hots
To roll into a closed 2.2 Million Acre Park

The first National Park
Which was founded before western state lines were drawn
Through lands already inhabited
How different a’place it must have felt to a traveler

With paved roads and big buildings
Gas stations and boardwalks
Came comfort to those Creating
Expanding
Invading
How different a’place it must have felt to a traveler
Before construction began

The silence within the park’s caldera
Must have echoed with significance
The camaraderie of a pack of coyotes
Must have hung like fog in the valleys

How different a’place it must have felt to a traveler
Who branched off from the Lewis and Clark expedition
And described rainbow pools and a hellish landscape
Where the ground smoked as if it were on fire

To a traveler, before the Park’s establishment
The landscape was unimpeded
Last week our crew got a glimpse at that different place
Just a glimpse, as the buildings and roads are permanently established
But the silence of the week echoes in my memories

Ryan Jansen


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