September 12, 2002 - Thursday

Today is overcast, so our original plan to re-visit the Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone River for some intense morning photography has been changed. Instead, we drove the 101 miles due east to Cody, Wyoming to visit the Wild Bill Cody Historic Center and its five museums.


The Colt Gun Museum is a massive collection of over two hundred years of the evolution of armaments. From a technology perspective, the gradual refinement of weaponry to such intense and extensive power is at least fascinating.

Buffalo Bill Cody Museum tracks his life and the parallel US and European historical events spanning his lifetime, 1846 - 1917. Cody was quite highly revered by everyone in his time. He was a flexible, savvy businessman who knew exactly what his customer wanted to see. Even after "retirement", he continued to be involved with entertaining children. When he died, the editorial cartoons in major newspapers and magazines represented his passing as if it were the end of idealism. Perhaps it was.


The Draper Museum provides a natural history education about the Yellowstone Park geology, flora and fauna. Some insights are also provided into the testy issues such as the fire management philosophy and re-introduction of wolves into the park eco-system.

Whitney Museum is an art collection that includes Catlin, Remington, and N.C. Wyeth -- painters and sculpture covering the old West and its evolution. Great pieces by Remington, including the life-size sculpture of a cowboy on a bucking bronco out in back of the museum, with a duplicate, smaller version directly inside the museum window.

The Plains Indian Museum is both a sad and hopeful portrayal of a lifestyle and culture lost due to our incursions, but also a powerful message about how all culture counts in the evolution of mankind. Beautiful workmanship in beads, tools, skins, baskets, dress, shoes, pottery are all on display here.

Back to Fishing Bay Bridge to do the laundry, walk through yet another Hamilton Store t-shirt collection and ten a lovely late dinner at Jackson Lake Lodge -- white table cloths and all.

Home late, but not all that fatiguing a day, just lots of leisurely walking. Tomorrow, if the sun behaves, we will do much more in our return to the Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone River.