Still Faithful

The sprawling inn that is the heart and soul of Yellowstone National Park has just achieved its hundredth birthday—thanks in large part to a few dedicated employees and specialists determined to keep it safe

ON SEPTEMBER 7, 1988, the area around old Faithful in Yellowstone National Park looked like Hell. The North Fork Fire, which had been burning since July and would ultimately torch a half-million acres, had arrived at the park’s most famous landmark. On most late-summer days, tourists would be milling around, waiting for the geyser’s next eruption. Now the remaining visitors and park employees were under fiery siege, as was the 84-year-old Old Faithful Inn. Would the famous hotel survive the onrushing inferno?

Read more »

Yellowstone Through The Back Door

Hidden in the park’s southwest corner,the lightly visited Bechler district offers a two-hundred-square-mile wilderness of meadows, hot springs, fantastic rock formations, and an unparalleled abundance of waterfalls

When William Gregg, a manufacturer and national parks enthusiast from Hackensack, New Jersey, visited Yellowstone National Park in 1920, his initial impressions were much like those many visitors take away today. “The tourist automobiles are now so thick on the park road that the superintendent has to establish one-way-street traffic regulations,” he reported in an article for The Saturday Evening Post . “And the designated camping grounds are so inadequate that often the auto canipevs find themselves huddled uncomfortably. Read more »

Explosion In The Magic Valley

The Photographic Record of a Western Success Story

The river has its source on the western slopes of the continental divide in Yellowstone National Park, flows south through Grand Teton National Park, curves west in a long arc through southern Idaho, then turns north and west for its meeting with the Columbia River, 1,038 miles from its beginnings. The land along its southern arc is called the Snake River Plains, and at the southernmost point of the arc there is a place called the Magic Valley—unsurprisingly, for a kind of magic was done there more than seventy-five years ago. Read more »