Road Trip Report: Old Faithful Delivers

Traveling Jul 12, 2012 2 Comments

This was one of the most memorable – and certainly one of the most photogenic moments – so far on the road trip.

We arrived at the Old Faithful Inn late on Wednesday after striking out on a couple of other attempted activities.  At least we’ll be able to see the last Old Faithful eruption before sunset, we thought.  Then, a storm started brewing, the temperature plummeted into the 50s, and the wind started to blow.  Our seats out on the balcony weren’t very comfortable any more.  We toughed it out.

The predicted time for the eruption came and went (they give OF +/- 10 minutes) and still the wind blew.  The sun was setting.  We were discouraged.

Suddenly, the rain stopped, the wind calmed, and the sun peeked through at the horizon – revealing the most extraordinary rainbow any of us had ever seen.

The storm cleared, revealing a rainbow at Old Faithful Inn

The show wasn’t over yet, though – we still had an eruption coming. As soon as the rainbow appeared, spectators started pouring out of every door and alcove near the geyser. We went from a quiet (though windy) evening, to a raucous crowd all anxious for Old Faithful to deliver before the sun went down, taking the rainbow with her. The atmosphere was a lot like that at a horse race, where the crowd is 100% behind a favorite horse that’s making a big move in the last turn. We were standing, and cheering, and actually encouraging Old Faithful to make her move, and blow into full eruption.

At two minutes past sunset, she did just that, revealing what we were hoping – an iconic geyser erupting into a brilliant double rainbow, witnessed from the balcony of the Old Faithful Inn.

And the crowd went wild, as they say.

Old Faithful Delivers


Bret Shroyer lives in Minnesota, where he enjoys outdoor activities and road trips in all seasons. He and his wife Tracie raise their three teenage children to be honest, independent, financially savvy and well-traveled. Together with their giant poodle, the Shroyer family strives to find excitement in whatever life has in store today. Bret's day job as a reinsurance actuary provides the resources and the flexibility to lead his family in their common pursuit of adventure.


  1. Nina

    Hi folks,

    We were there the same night and saw the spectacular display. Definitely the most memorable part of our trip out west! Thanks for posting your experience.


  2. Bret

    Thanks for the note, Nina. We were nervous about the cold, wet wind – but when the rainbow came out, we knew we were in the right place, at the right time. Really a great moment, on a memorable trip!

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