Artist’s Waterfall: Waterfall in Yellowstone

Artist's WaterfallThe lower waterfall of the Yellowstone River in Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming, has sparked amazement and wonder for as long as they as they have been viewed. The waterfall is just over three hundred feet high, and is the tallest waterfall in the Rocky Mountains. The power of the water pouring through the falls is staggering, and the constant roar underscores that constantly. Naturally, they are a highlight of any trip to Yellowstone.

This view is from Artist Point, a classic view with a classic name. This view was originally named in 1883 by Frank Haynes to honor the painter Thomas Moran, who originally sketched the falls. It was Moran’s work that brought to life the compelling imagery of Yellowstone, which in turn fueled the desire to make the trek to Yellowstone, the end result being it becoming a National Park. However, as it all turns out, Moran’s view of the falls wasn’t from this point, or anywhere near it. By the time this was realized, however, the name was firmly established. What’s in a name, anyway?

I personally find this view of the falls inspiring. I’ve been to it many times, and each time come away with a new sense of wonder. I settled on this photograph, however, as my favorite view. I like the roiling clouds as a mid-summer’s day thunderstorm begins to form over the park and the falls. I like how the turbulence of the clouds reflects the turbulence of the water below them, mirroring, echoing and amplifying the raw chaos of the scene. I like the deep colors of the sky reflected by the deep colors of the beginning of the “Grand Canyon of Yellowstone,” for after this point, the Yellowstone River has carved its way one thousand feet down, forming, indeed, a Grand Canyon. For me, the photograph captures well the ferocity of the falls.

In any event, it is easy to enjoy this fantastic view for hours on end.

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