Yellowstone National Park

Neal,Age 8

Yellowstone National Park is a national park located in the western U.S.A. It is the first national park in the world. The park is known for its wildlife and geothermal features.

Yellowstone covers 3,468.4 sq miles. Beneath Yellowstone, there is a supervolcano. This supervolcano is the largest volcano in the world. It has erupted with tremendous force several times during the last two million years., Yellowstone is home to more than 500 active geysers (more than half the world’s geysers). Over half the world’s geysers and hydrothermal features are in Yellowstone, fueled by ongoing vulcanism. Lava flows and rocks from volcanic eruptions cover most of Yellowstone’s area.

One of the first settlers to explore Yellowstone was a man named John Colter. He was one of America’s first mountain men, living in the wilderness for months at a time, and a member of the Lewis and Clark Expedition, sent by President Thomas Jefferson to find a route through the American West.

When Colter returned from his travels, he described seeing the place that is now Yellowstone National Park, telling stories about ‘boiling mud holes’ and exploding geysers. His descriptions sounded so crazy that no one believed him.

Of course, what he saw were the many geothermal wonders of the park, which now attract visitors from around the world.
It has now been just over 100 years since park rangers assumed responsibility for Yellowstone National Park from the U.s. Army. To celebrate the rich history and incredible change in the park over the years, we put together these “then-and-now” photos, highlighting just how Yellowstone has changed.

The true beauty of the park is in the details – in seeing how time, wind, water, and yes, even we humans have changed Yellowstone. It’s incredible to look back at what the park’s most beloved landmarks were like back when those first rangers walked the trails and to compare those images with today’s.

These pictures tell a story decades in the making, which is still unfolding every day – and thanks to stewards of Yellowstone like yourself, there are generations’ worth of stories still left to tell.