For a visit to Bozeman we parked at the Bear Canyon Campground a few miles east of town. Bozeman has a rich history dating to the early 1960’s when the discovery of gold brought thousands of miners into the territory. One of them, John Bozeman decided to lead immigrants to the gold fields via a series of old Indian trails, which soon became know as the Bozeman Trail. Those who chose to forgo the mines settled in what became known as the town of Bozeman to establish farms and ranches.
When we visited Yellowstone National Park back in 2015 we explored almost all of the park but did not make it to the northernmost part, Mammoth Hot Springs. From Bozeman it is a drive of about 1 1/2 hours to the town of Gallatin, MT, which is just outside the northern entrance to YNP.
Mammoth Hot Springs is a complex of thermal springs on a hill of travertine that has been created over thousands of years. Hot water that feeds these springs comes from Norris Geyser Basin traveling along a fault line. The limestone from rock formations along the fault is the source of calcium carbonate that gets deposited by the springs. The result are the beautiful terraces of travertine in a variety of formations and colors. It reminds me of a cave that has been turned inside out. In many places you can see the water trickling down the face of the terraces making them appear to shimmer and ripple.
Next stop: Billings, MT