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Norris Geyser Basin

Spring in Wyoming

Introduction

Geothermal Features

  • πŸŒ‹ Steamboat Geyser: The tallest active geyser in the world, with eruptions reaching 300-400 feet.
  • 🌑️ Echinus Geyser: Known for its acidic water, with a pH of around 3.5.
  • 🌈 Porcelain Basin: Features milky blue waters due to high silica concentration.
  • 🌳 Back Basin: Heavily wooded area with scattered geothermal features.
  • πŸ’₯ Porkchop Geyser: Notable for its 1989 steam explosion.
  • πŸ’§ Emerald Spring: A 27-foot deep pool with green water due to sulfur and refracted light.
  • 🌫️ Fumaroles: Roaring Mountain contains many fumaroles, which were more powerful in the late 1800s.

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Trails and Accessibility

  • πŸšΆβ€β™‚οΈ Porcelain Basin Trail: A 3/4-mile (1.2-km) trail with boardwalks and bare ground.
  • 🌲 Back Basin Trail: A 1.5-mile (2.4-km) trail through a wooded area.
  • πŸ›€οΈ Boardwalks: Ensure safe viewing of geothermal features.
  • β™Ώ Accessibility: Some trails may be challenging for those with mobility issues.
  • πŸ…ΏοΈ Parking: 143 total spaces, with 17 oversized spaces. Overflow parking available.

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Historical Background

  • πŸ“œ Named After: Philetus W. Norris, the second superintendent of Yellowstone.
  • πŸ›οΈ Norris Geyser Basin Museum: Built in 1929-30, a National Historic Landmark.
  • πŸŽ–οΈ Museum of the National Park Ranger: Located in the historic Norris Soldier Station.
  • πŸ—ΊοΈ Early Exploration: Norris provided the first detailed information about the thermal features.

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Nearby Attractions

  • 🎨 Artists Paintpots: A small thermal area with colorful hot springs and mudpots.
  • 🌊 Gibbon Falls: An 84-foot waterfall formed by the Yellowstone Caldera rim.
  • 🌫️ Roaring Mountain: A large, acidic thermal area with many fumaroles.
  • ❄️ Virginia Cascades: A scenic drive past a 60-foot high waterfall, open to cross-country skiing in winter.

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Wildlife

  • 🐻 Bears: Both black and grizzly bears are sometimes seen in the area.
  • 🦎 Sagebrush Lizards: One of the few areas in the park where they live.
  • 🐸 Chorus Frogs: Listen for them in spring.
  • πŸ¦… Killdeer: Found year-round, feeding on insects in the warm waters.
  • 🐟 Gibbon River: Popular for fly-fishing, home to brook trout, brown trout, grayling, and rainbow trout.

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Visitor Information

  • πŸ•’ Best Time to Visit: Early morning or late afternoon to avoid crowds.
  • 🚻 Facilities: Restrooms available near the parking lot.
  • πŸ“š Bookstore: Located near the entrance, offers educational materials.
  • πŸ›‘ Safety: Stay on boardwalks to avoid dangerous thermal features.
  • πŸš— Parking: 143 total spaces, with overflow parking available.

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