The two main attractions are:
|USGS Geologic Map of the lava flows overlaying with the faults.|
|Diagram of the different types of geothermal features found in Yellowstone. Yellowstone is the most concentrated location of geothermal activity with 10,000 thermal features and 300 geysers!|
Examples are: Old Faithful, Norris Geyser Basin, Mammoth Hot Springs, Grand Prismatic Spring, Indian Pond, Black Growler, and Fountain Paint Pot.
Grand Canyon of Yellowstone is another main tourist attraction, with over eight different viewing spots along the Yellowstone River. The two major waterfalls are Lower Falls and Upper Falls.Ten years from now Yellowstone River will continue eroding away the canyon, picking up the softer rhyolite in the dissolved and suspended load. Resistant rock, in this case hard rhyolite, will collapse as undercuts crave out the less resistant rock. Scientists speculate an ancient geyser basin is responsible for the softening of the rhyolite (chemical weathering), that in turn help create the waterfalls. Both Upper and Lower Falls will retreat upstream, showing the knick points are temporary. Yellowstone River occupies a V-shaped valley, exposing the process of fluvial erosion and perhaps a flood by glacial dam breaking over 14,000 years ago.
|Aerial view of Upper and Lower Falls in 1974.|
Yellowstone River contains: meandering channels, alluvial deposits, waterfalls, eroding bedrock, and knick points. This perennial river is part of a larger dendritic drainage pattern, starting in North Dakota. Observing the map of the drainage basin, there are three tributaries with Yellowstone River being the largest.
|Section of Missouri River Basin with Yellowstone River at the main tributary. Yellowstone National Park is highlighted in yellow.|
Yellostone's 1988 fire that destroyed one-third of Yellowstone could happen again in a hundred years!
|Over 25,000 firefighters participated to control the flames that lasted from early July to October in 1988.|
|Rhyolite is the main soil at Yellowstone, exposing Yellowstone's violent past.|
|Satellite image of Yellowstone's 1988 fire.|
|Rhyolite magma is moving upward towards to two domes.|
|Looking northwest Mallard Lake Dome and the gaben that formed along its axis.|
|Generalized cross section of the crust underYellowstone. Expressing the ring faults where a lot of the earthquakes and growth of the domes occur.|
One key factor in the future of Yellowstone are the tourists. Yellowstone is a hot spot for vacations. People bring in pollution, trash, food and congestion to the once mysterious place. The interaction between the wildlife and visitors have transformed over the century. So will the geology and the physical geography of Yellowstone National Park!
|My Ma, and I depressed at the Leaving Yellowstone National Park sign.|