Janet’s guidebook reveals many historical and geological facts to the reader. For example, here’s an excerpt from the road log for a point six miles from Fishing Bridge Junction on Yellowstone Lake:
Turnout at Holmes Point, named for W. H. Holmes after the initials W. H. H. were found on a rock here. Holmes was the artist and geologist with the 1872 and 1878 Hayden Surveys.
From this point the road follows Mary Bay of Yellowstone Lake for a while. Mary Bay was named for Mary Force, the girlfriend of Henry Elliot, artist with the 1871 Hayden Survey. Mary’s name remains on the bay, though when Elliot returned home, he married someone else.
The rounded forms and steep sides of Mary Bay attest to the fact that it is an explosion crater. The Mary Bay crater dates back about 13,800 years. The bay has lots of underwater hot springs and the hottest spot in the lake, measured at 212°F (100°C).
What if you have never heard of the Hayden Surveys? The Chronology chapter at the back of Yellowstone Treasures tells you about the 1871 one: “Dr. Ferdinand V. Hayden leads the first of three congressionally funded Yellowstone expeditions” (p. 321).
And what if you would like to know more about what an explosion crater is? Look in the Glossary and you will find:
- explosion crater
- A feature found in volcanic terrains. A sudden pressure drop causes hot water to flash into steam and blast a hole in Earth’s surface.
The editor, Beth Chapple