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Yellowstone National Park
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Introducing Yellowstone National Park

They grow their mammals and geysers big up in Yellowstone, America’s first national park and Wyoming’s flagship attraction. From shaggy grizzlies to giant moose, this park boasts the lower 48’s most motley concentration of wildlife. Plus, it is home to half the world’s geysers. And when you factor in the plethora of alpine lakes, rivers and waterfalls you’ll quickly realize you’ve stumbled across one of Mother Nature’s most fabulous creations. This natural cornucopia attracts up to 30, 000 visitors daily in summer and three-million gatecrashers annually. To escape the crowds, take a hike.

When John Colter became the first white man to visit the area in 1807, the only inhabitants were Tukadikas, a Shoshone Bannock people who hunted bighorn sheep. Colter’s reports of the soaring geysers and boiling mud holes (at first dismissed as tall tales) brought in expeditions and tourism interest. The park was established in 1872 to preserve Yellowstone’s spectacular geography: the geothermal phenomena, the fossil forests and Yellowstone Lake.