Even though Yellowstone borders no ocean, water plays an important role in its life, geography and beauty.
Yellowstone National Park has 17 rivers running through it.
And wetlands cover more than 10 percent of the park’s backcountry.
And the landscape is graced with some 300 waterfalls.
Much of Yellowstone, in fact, is uniquely wet.
While some surrounding areas average seven or eight inches of rain a year, parts of Yellowstone get up to 30! Plus about 50 feet of snow!
Rivers and streams continually run through and shape Yellowstone’s landscape.
The extent of the water in the park continued to amaze adventure seekers, and even the experts.
LEE WHITTLESEY : “So many of the rivers begin here and flow every which direction off the plateau, so it is, you know, there’s a lot of water up here.”
Lee Whittlesey and Mike Stevens find waterfalls. And when they began searching, no one dreamt how many they’d find.
In 1999, there were just 50 falls on the map.
LEE WHITTLESEY : “We thought we might find as many as five waterfalls that nobody had found. Instead, we found close to 300.”
A fall must be 15 feet tall to qualify, but most are much larger.
Before recent finds, the well-known Lower Falls held the title as Yellowstone’s tallest--- 308 feet.
At least three waterfalls are now known to be higher.
And the park is defined by water: Valleys shaped by glaciers. Rivers and falls carve away rock. And water creates the geysers.
These are only a few of the marvels of nature for all to see in the world’s first national park.