rafi alam


Last Week of 2015

Day 3: December 25, 2015. 

Christmas at the Yellowstone! Aah. The Yellowstone - the reason we basically started this untimely road trip - was right ahead of us.

After the heinous murder of that deer calf right in front of its sibling the night before, it was obvious I wouldn’t be able to sleep that well… Okay just kidding. I just woke up early because I just did. If anything was haunting me it definitely wasn’t that stupid deer - maybe that thing since August. Ugh.

Anyway, I did wake up a bit earlier than my comrades and went out to take a photo or two - literally to wish a Merry Christmas to my Facebook friends. Yeah - priorities. But it was worth it: the scenery was something from out of this world I’m telling you.

Later on, we decided to go through the northern portion of the Yellowstone - the only accessible part this season (via ordinary vehicles with snow tires that is). As we entered the park, we asked the park ranger about how far we could go, and he said we could go all the way to the Cooke City - the other northern gate at the end of the northern route.

We unfortunately being the idiots we are, misinterpreted that as an option where we could exit the park and get on the main highway from there.

We obviously couldn’t.

Anyway - there’s that - as soon as we got to the Cooke City, nobody even had to tell us the fact that the road stops there, since 8-10 feet of snow were covering the only freeway leading to the main highway from there. So we had to return through the Yellowstone again, setting us one day back to reach San Fransisco later.

Now that’s one story, but the route through the Yellowstone itself wasn’t any less exciting. See, we were already too concerned about deer and other animals (did I mention we killed a calf the night before?). So naturally, the moment we saw a huge full grown elk walking the same way as us - its back to us - we kind of lost our shit and skid off the road… and got stuck in the ice stacked on the side, of course. If it were not for the kind gentlemen and ladies from two different cars, who, luckily for us, were passing by the same time - if they hadn’t helped us with pulling the Jeep out with there chains and truck - yeah we’d be pretty screwed. Mind you, there were no network in any of our phones.

Close call.

In our way back from Cooke City, we encountered herds of bisons, going back to there - homes? Anyway, the interesting bit was there was this one particular herd, where two bisons, for some reason, weren’t wiling to get off the road. These bisons are almost twice as big as our tiny little Jeep - and we already have had two separate incidents with these animals - so naturally we weren’t enjoying the situation.

Until this one particular bison decides to come back from the field, go behind these two bisons and start pushing them off the road. Some Animal Planet shit went down right there. Damn.

We returned to Gardiner, MT, at around 6/7 PM, and decided to push westward - to cover as much distance possible over the night. Initially I was shooting for the Twin Falls in Idaho - the last major city in the state before Nevada, but who knew Montana would be such a b****?

There was this one particular road - a 75mph freeway - through the Rocky Mountains in Montana: it took us more than 2 hours to drive through it, which in normal days would have taken 20 minutes tops. I love snow and cold - but NO THANKS, Montana!

As soon as we entered Idaho, though, the roads changed dramatically. I mean the weather was still terrible, but literally - and I literally mean “literally” - the moment we saw “Welcome to Idaho”, the roads appeared cleaner and dry. Once again, NO THANKS, MONTANA!

We couldn’t make it to Twin Falls that night, instead, we stopped at a town called Idaho Falls at around 1:30 in the morning. What a Christmas Day indeed!

[Day 1, Day 2]