Well now it seems that’s a good question! While standing at the Grand Canyon of Yellowstone overlook, I finally saw it. The yellow stone and it’s a stunner. The earth is split 4,000 feet apart for twenty miles. Yellowstone River, which oddly happens to be a vivid emerald color, runs through at 1,200 feet below.
Wait, what, I’m off the point, you want to know the answer to the question? Here it is…
Probably from the Minnetaree Indian tribe, who told French-Canadian trappers what they called the river. Mi tse a-da-zi, or Yellow Rock River. I know, that’s not really Yellowstone or even Yellow Stone. It gets even more confusing when you add Lewis and Clark into the mix as noted by Yellowstone National Park.
Now if you ask me, since the river is not yellow, it’s most likely the rocks of the canyon itself that brought on the name plus a little lost in translation and telephone game that landed us at Yellowstone.
Extractions of information aside, when you’re standing at the Grand Canyon of Yellowstone, you get it. The vivid yellow stands in sharp contrast from the rest of the park. I actually let out an audible “wow” on first sight.
There also happens to be beautiful mineral stains of pink in the same canyon. Thus making it one of my favorite sights in Yellowstone National Park.
I aim to share what I learn along the way. If you find an inaccuracy in the information I present, please by all means, call me out on it with a comment below.
More Cross Country Travel Trivia: Name America’s First National Forest