When you’re thinking about travel destinations in the U.S., Idaho isn’t exactly at the top of the list. After seeing a small portion of this beautiful state, I’m not sure why. It’s lovely and Idahoans (or is that Idahoites?) are as hospitable as those nice folks in Mississippi. Virtually everyone was friendly and helpful to us and delighted in my husband’s Southern drawl.
While incredibly hospitable, not all Idahoans have positive feelings about us Southerners. Yesterday, sitting in a hot springs in Lava Hot Springs, Idaho, a 60-something local gentleman who had traveled through the South as a truck driver told John and I that he didn’t really trust Southerners. “You don’t know what they’re thinking,” he said. John conceded that in some parts of the country south of the Mason Dixon Line, a gentleman with an accent might be considered an outsider. Not sure the Idahoan got that to the folks in Macon, Georgia or Dothan, Alabama, HE’S the one with a funny accent.
We did enjoy the pools in Lava Hot Springs – a different experience than Ojo Calliente in New Mexico, but very relaxing nonetheless. My romantic husband surprised me with a picnic in a little park sitting right beside the hot springs. We feasted on some mild Thai food surrounded by spruce trees.
Then, we hopped back in the rig and pushed on to Yellowstone National Park – the Big Kahuna as national parks go. Five minutes into the park and it didn’t disappoint. We were greeted by a herd of buffalo.
We entered in the park’s west entrance, which is actually in Montana, and made it to the Madison campground site before dark. We were awakened in the wee hours of the morning by the scream of a mountain lion followed by the barking of a dog. We heard the dog barking long after the mountain lion stopped screaming; so, we don’t think they tangled which is probably best for the family pooch. Note to Yellowstone campers: don’t let your pet out at night. There are things here that can eat it.
Today, it’s snowing and dipping below 30 on occasion. We’re bundled up and off to explore parts of this gigantic park. I’ll be on the lookout for Yogi and Boo Boo. Oh wait, that’s JELLYStone not Yellowstone. My bad.