Grand Prismatic Spring

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The Grand Prismatic Spring is the third largest hot spring in the world. It is located in Yellowstone National Park in the Middle Geyser Basin,in the state of Wyoming,United States.

The earliest records on this source are from early European explorers and surveyors. In 1839 a group of trappers from the American Fur Company crossed the Midway Geyser Basin and wrote a note about a “boiling lake of 300 feet” , which corresponds to about 91 meters and thus could apply to the Grand Prismatic Spring.

In 1870, the Washburn-Langford-Doane expedition visited the source and also reported a nearby geyser -now Excelsior Geyser- that was “50 feet”.
The spring is formed as a result of the release of heated groundwater to the surface, which comes from the depths of the earth’s crust. The Grand Prismatic Spring  was named for its incredible color. The presence of one color or another is explained by the presence of minerals and thermophilic bacteria, which prevail in different temperature zones. The water temperature is 71 ° C. First of all, the source is known not only for its color and shape, but also for its size (75 × 91 meters).
The colors come from unicellular microorganisms (bacteria and archaea) in the biofilm at the edge of the mineral-rich thermal spring. They move between green and red and depend on the chlorophyll and carotenoid content of the microorganisms that are adapted to the water temperature. In summer the biofilm tends to orange and red, whereas in winter it tends to be dark green.
It is the largest known American hot spring, and the third largest in the world. It is one of the most popular tourist attractions in the national park, along with the Mammoth Hot Springs and the Old Faithful.

Access : Coordinates: 44.525049, -110.83819 / Yellowstone is located in the northern United States in Wyoming, Montana and Idaho.

Highlights :

  • The Grand Prismatic Spring is approximately 80 meters by 90 meters in size and is 50 meters deep. Thermal water discharges are estimated to be 560 US gallons (2,100 L) of 160 ° F (70 ° C) of water per minute.
  • Walking in the park is allowed along special asphalt paths that are laid near the reservoir. It is not allowed to arbitrarily approach and approach the source.
  • Grand Loop Road : The popular tourist route “Big Loop”, shaped like a figure 8 and can be driven in one day ,which is about 230 km long. On the territory of the reserve, it is worth seeing the dormant Yellowstone Volcano, a forest of petrified trees, a mountain lake, the Lower Falls and the river of the same name.

Go next : The Old Faithful Geyser / Mammoth Hot Springs is a natural limestone tufa-type mineral edifice found in Yellowstone National Park / The Morning Glory Pool is a hot spring located in the Upper Geyser Basin in Yellowstone National Park.

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