Palette Spring (1991)

It’s not difficult to imagine warm-colored oil paints dripping on an artist’s palette when viewing this travertine formation in the Mammoth Hot Springs area of Yellowstone National Park. The “paints” are actually thermophilic bacteria nourished by hot water that deposits dissolved limestone as it flows downhill. The small mound to the left of the “palette” is an extinct hot spring called the Devil’s Thumb.

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