Yellowstone National Park
Yellowstone National Park, sprawling over the state boundaries of Wyoming, Idaho and Montana, is 9000 km2 of freedom. This wilderness of canyons, geysers, waterfalls and hot springs, where wolves and grizzly bears still roam, is one of the biggest draws for visitors from the US and beyond – yet it's also virtually uninhabited. Straight after the first geological survey of Yellowstone was completed, the then-president Ulysses S. Grant designated the area a national park, and forbade settlement on its land, as well as excluding the Shoshone Native American tribes who had hunted in the region for centuries. 150 years on from Grant's Act of Dedication, Yellowstone National Park remains untamed: a mirage-like succession of natural wonders, its few access roads prone to “bear jams” instead of traffic jams, and where human beings can hike, camp or ride, but never belong.
Trek (or even rollerblade!) a sample of Yellowstone's 900 miles of trails to see a few of the park's most breathtaking sights: the Grand Prismatic Spring with its electric blue water banded in rainbow colours; the inky glow of Obsidian Cliff; and the steaming tree-tall spout of the Old Faithful geyser. Hike down Uncle Tom's Trail and feel your blood pound in your veins as you look down over the Lower Falls, twice the height of Niagara. Spend the day riding through wide grassy valleys (you can even get a llama to carry your rucksack!), then camp under the stars in famous campsites like Slough Creek and Tower Fall. Yellowstone National Park is rich with wildlife: bison and wild horses, golden eagles, black bears, and even roving grizzlies and wolf packs. And if you’re keen to take a closer look at Yellowstone’s top carnivores, head to the Grizzly and Wolf Discovery Centre in the west of the park to meet white wolves and brown bears.