A trip to Yellowstone National Park would not be complete without taking the time to view the Old Faithful geyser show! Old Faithful has been the main attraction of Yellowstone for many years and this powerful geyser truly is a symbol of the west. If one can imagine mother nature putting on an exciting show with repeat performances that draws thousands of spectators all day long, year after year, then it is easy to see why Old Faithful can be likened to being the longest running box office smash hit of all time!
Old Faithful was the first geyser named in Yellowstone Park and it is also one of the most predictable. Old Faithful erupts at regular intervals that range between 45 minutes to 2 hours. There are a few larger geysers in Yellowstone, but the location and predictability of Old Faithful makes this geyser the most popular one to view. This wide barren white geyser cone lies on a hilltop meadow, so when the steaming hot water erupts, the event can be seen clearly from several hundred yards away.
Predicting exactly when Old Faithful will erupt has become a sort of contest in recent years. There actually is an official Yellowstone National Park prediction sign that is posted at the lodging complex that lets visitors know the approximate time when the Old Faithful show will begin. Sometimes Old Faithful starts the show a little early or a bit late, but this geyser never fails to please the crowd.
Oddly enough, I arrived at Old Faithful at about two minutes after an eruption took place. After looking at the event prediction sign, I figured that it would be about an hour till the next big show. This gave me a chance to settle into the waiting game routine. Wandering around the visitors center, browsing the gift shops and touring the historic Old Faithful Lodge was a nice way to pass the time. After lazing for a spell on a rustic timber rocking chair on the Old Faithful Lodge veranda, it was time to find a ringside seat. Other viewers started trickling in a few at a time at first, but as the predicted eruption time drew near, the huge amphitheater seating filled up.
As usual, the predictability of the Old Faithful eruption came into question. It seemed like hours went by while waiting on the park bench and any time a small puff of steam could be seen, the anticipation increased even more. Birds of all kinds swooped down to say hello, just as if they were used to the human zoo routine. When a few of the other small geysers on the hilltop started erupting with short bursts, the viewers knew that the time for Old Faithful to take center stage was drawing near.
All of a sudden the birds flew away and disappeared, which they habitually did for self preservation in this geyser field. Steam started puffing out of the Old Faithful Geyser Cone and sounds of awe started coming from the crowd. Suddenly there was the powerful booming sound of high pressure steam being released and the erupting geyser jettisoned boiling hot water high in the sky. The eruption lasted for about 10 minutes and it was really quite a show, even on a dreary overcast day!
Old Faithful is symbolic of many good things and no two shows are same. The natural mechanics of how Old Faithful actually works are interesting and it is explained in the viewing complex. The Old Faithful Show certainly is a great event to attend with friends and loved ones. Old Faithful is a place where many people tie the knot of wedlock and it is a place to gain inspiration to live life to its fullest. Old Faithful is the longest running headliner show in the west and it is well worth the wait to see the show!
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