Yellowstone N.P.

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September 21, 2003

This is a view of the same area, but the flow is not as hot.   The stringy formations in the foreground are another type of growth (bacteral, fungal, moss???) which has adapted to elevated temperatures.  Boardwalks are provided around most of the geothermal areas as you can see here in the background.  These are to protect the sensitive areas around the features, but also to protect visitors.   Much of the ground around the springs is very thin and man or animal can easily break through the crust, possibly into boiling hot water or steam.  Many people have been burned and even died in this manner.