Most of the buildings in Grant Village have been deactivated for winter and boards are up on the windows of these buildings. Shane and his team have been busy bleeding all the water lines to make sure there will be no pipes freezing or water leaks. The visitor center is one of the many buildings that has been deactivated for the winter which means that I have to move my office to the Ranger Station until next spring. I thought this would only take a day or so but everytime I get to my new office I remember one more thing I should bring with me! It will be nice in the Ranger Station this winter since I will have the company of the Law Enforcement Rangers. I have been in my new office for one week and the conversations that I over hear are much different but it is a pleasant reminder that I could never be a Law Enforcement Park Ranger- being an Interpretive Park Ranger is just my pace!
I have been going to Old Faithful on Sundays lately to help staff the new visitor education center. It is a pleasant change of pace from my usual office work and allows me to get to know the staff at Old Faithful a little more intimately. I also get the privilage of watching Old Faithful erupt every 60 to 90 minutes! Even by 5 O'Clock, after watching it erupt since 9 am, it doesn't get old! All I have to do is look around at he eager faces who have travelled from all over the world just to watch Old Faithful to remember just what an honor it is to be a Park Ranger at Yellowstone. Last Sunday both Beehive Geyser and Old Faithful erupted at the same time putting on quite the show for everyone in its presence!
Back in Grant I have begun preparing the winter warming hut for the winter as well. The warming hut is located two miles north of Grant Village at West Thumb Geyser Basin. It is a sweet little log cabin with a desk, wood stove, and benches. It will be used by visitors this winter as a place to stop and warm up as they travel through the park via snowmobile or snow coach. Myself and two winter seasonals will staff this warming hut through the winter as well as another warming hut located in the Lake district of the Park. So far the winter educational & safety displays are up on the walls and the wood is neatly stacked. Now we just need some snow!
For the last week there have been dark clouds overhead everyday but still no snow! I keep reminding myself that in no time there will be more snow than I could dream of, but I still cannot help the urge every morning to jump out of bed and peer out the window only to disappointedly say "Still no snow!" There is something magical about that first big winter snowfall; as sun sets the sky becomes a dark navy blue. The night air is cool and still and then it happens- giant snow flakes fall down and glissen in moonlight. Even if you don't like hot cocoa you still want a warm mug of it in your hand while you watch the snow come down forever! And when you go to bed you just can't wait till morning to see just how much snow fell overnight!
And so I impatiently wait for the first big snowfall while fond memories of my childhood dance about in my head. Until then I will just keep stacking the wood that Shane so diligently chops every evening as we prepare for winter.