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Grand Prismatic Spring: Yellowstone National Park - 2014 | by Kyla Duhamel
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Grand Prismatic Spring: Yellowstone National Park - 2014

Grand Prismatic Spring

Grand Prismatic Spring is the largest hot spring in Yellowstone and is considered to be the third largest hot spring in the world. New Zealand has the two largest springs. Grand Prismatic sits upon a wide, spreading mound where water flows evenly on all sides forming a series of small, stair-step terraces. The Hayden Expedition in 1871 named this spring because of its beautiful coloration, and artist Thomas Moran made water-color sketches depicting its rainbow-like colors. The sketches seemed exaggerations, and geologist A.C. Peale returned in 1878 to verify the colors. The colors begin with a deep blue center followed by pale blue. Green algae forms beyond the shallow edge. Outside the scalloped rim a band of yellow fades into orange. Red then marks the outer border. Steam often shrouds the spring which reflects the brilliant colors. Grand Prismatic discharges an estimated 560 gallons per minute, has a temperature of 147-188°F, and has dimensions of 250x380 feet.

 

Grand Prismatic Spring can also be seen from atop the hill immediately to the southwest. To get to the hill, drive 1.3 miles south and park at the trailhead to Fairy Falls. Walk north along the foot trail for about 0.6 miles. There will be several small trails criss-crossing up the hill. Pick your favorite one, and have fun. Don't worry, the ranger told us it was OK to leave the main trail.

 

Temperature 147-188°F Dimensions 250x380 feet. Grand Prismatic is the largest hot spring in Yellowstone, and is considered to be the third largest in the world-New Zealand has the two largest springs. Grand Prismatic sits upon a wide, spreading mound where water flows evenly on all sides forming a series of small, stair-step terraces. The Hayden Expedition in 1871 named this spring because of its beautiful coloration, and artist Thomas Moran made water-color sketches depicting its rainbow-like colors. The sketches seemed exaggerations and geologist A.C. Peale returned in 1878 to verify the colors. The colors begin with a deep blue center followed by pale blue. Green algae forms beyond the shallow edge. Outside the scalloped rim a band of yellow fades into orange. Red then marks the outer border. Steam often shrouds the spring which reflects the brilliant colors. Grand Prismatic discharges an estimated 560 gallons per minute.

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Taken on July 28, 2014