The summer months may be coming to an end, but there is still plenty of time left to enjoy the outdoors. From camping to hiking, biking to boating, late summer is a wonderful time of year to enjoy being outside in nature. One of the best places to enjoy the outdoors is at Yellowstone National Park. Leafcanoer, searchingforyourzen, recently posted a leaf called “Yellowstone National Park – Oh What a Place!” about his visit to Yellowstone National Park. The gorgeous pictures and descriptions of his leaf can certainly attest to how memorable a place Yellowstone National Park can be. For those who are new to Yellowstone, and who may be planning an upcoming visit to the park, here are seven fun facts about Yellowstone National Park.
1) Yellowstone National Park is America’s first national park.
Yellowstone National Park was first established in 1872 by President Grant. It encompasses areas in what is now the states of Wyoming, Montana and Idaho. At the time of the park’s establishment, those three states had yet to be granted statehood.
2) Yellowstone National Park covers an area that is larger than the combined area of Delaware and Rhode Island
With an area of over 3,400 square miles, Yellowstone National Park stretches approximately 63 miles north to south, and 54 miles east to west. The majority of the area, approximately 80% of the park, is covered by forest, while the rest comprises of water and grasslands.
3) Yellowstone National Park is also a UNESCO World Heritage Site
With over 50 mammal species, 311 bird species, 18 fish species, 6 reptile species, 4 amphibian species, and 5 endangered species, Yellowstone National Park contains the largest concentration of wildlife in the continental United States. Due to its biodiversity, Yellowstone National Park was accepted as a biosphere reserve in 1976. In 1978, the park was accepted as a World Heritage Site.
4) There are over 300 active geysers at Yellowstone National Park
With so many geysers, as well as about 10,000 thermal features, the park produces approximately 3.3 million acre-feet of water every year. The Grand Prismatic Spring alone pumps over 4,000 gallons of water every minute. There are also 290 waterfalls and 12 rivers that run through Yellowstone.
5) There are 26 American Indian tribes associated with Yellowstine National Park
In the past, Native Americans would quarry obsidian from the surrounding areas to be used for trade. And in the late 1800’s, Yellowstone National Park became a refuge for the Nez Pearce, who fled to the area after many of their tribe were killed in battle with United States Army in the Pacific Northwest.
6) Yellowstone National Park is an archaeological treasure trove
An 11,000 year old Clovis-type of spear was found at Yellowstone National Park, marking it as the earliest evidence of humans at Yellowstone. Other evidence of early inhabitants include a 9,350 year old campsite found on the shore of Lake Yellowstone.
7) Yellowstone National Park is visited by millions of visitors annually
The highest recorded number of annual visitors to Yellowstone National Park was in 2010, when over 3.6 million visitors came to the park that year. The park is fully equipped to handle large numbers of visitors. Its grounds contain 9 hotels, 7 campgrounds operated by the National Park Service, and 5 privately operated campgrounds.
With so many things to see, in addition to all the geology and history to learn about, Yellowstone National Park is certainly worth a visit. People love Yellowstone National Park for its scenic beauty and wealth of activities and areas to explore. A trip to the park will most definitely provide you with a memorable look at Yellowstone’s flora and fauna, as well as leave you with a greater appreciation for the wonders of nature.
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