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Explore More Episode 1: Why are people attracted to Wyoming?

Old Faithful Photos: Mack H. Frost

Listen to Episode 1: Why are People Attracted to Wyoming?


Snow Vocabulary

Hail: Pellets of frozen rain which fall in showers

Meteorologist: An expert in or student of meteorology; a weather forecaster

Meteorology: The branch of science concerned with the processes and phenomena of the atmosphere, especially as a means of forecasting the weather

Snow: Water vapor frozen into ice crystals and falling in light white flakes or lying on the ground as a white layer

Weather: The state of the atmosphere at a place and time as regards heat, dryness, sunshine, wind, rain, etc.

Old Faithful Vocabulary

Eruption: To erupt, explode and eject lava, ash, water, steam, etc.

Geophysicist: A scientist who studies the earth’s physical properties and the physical processes acting upon, above, and within the earth. It includes seismology, geomagnetism, meteorology, and oceanography

Geyser: A hot spring in which water intermittently boils, sending a tall column of water and steam into the air

Old Faithful: Geyser in Yellowstone National Park. Named for its frequent and somewhat predictable eruptions, which number more than a million since Yellowstone became the first national park in 1872

Thermal Feature: Holes in the Earth’s crust from which hot water and steam (geysers), and gases and vapors (fumaroles) are emitted

Yellowstone National Park: On March 1, 1872, Yellowstone became the first national park in the United States for all to enjoy the unique hydrothermal and geologic wonders

How to make snow

  • 4 cups of frozen baking soda
  • 1-2 cups of cold water (added slowly)
  • Begin by pouring 4 cups of frozen baking soda into a large bowl or container
  • Freezing the baking soda isn’t necessary, but it makes the “snow” extra icy & cold.
  • Slowly begin to add cold water and mix, slowly adding more water and mixing until the desired consistency is reached.
  • As you mix the water into the baking soda the most amazing fluffy snow will form! 

Geyser Plumbing

Buffalo Bill Center of the West Education

Making a Geyser

  • Water
  • Liquid soap
  • Empty bottle with a narrow neck (like old fashion soda bottles)
  • Alka Seltzer tablets
  • Large container, basin or tub
  • Paper towels and sponges (for clean up)
  • Safety glasses or googles 
  • Parental assistance


1. Before beginning, have all participants put on their safety glasses. If you do not have safety glasses, make sure you step at least 6 feet away to observe this experiment. 

2. Place the empty bottle into the tub or basin. 

3. Fill the empty bottle with warm water almost to the top. 

4. Add a few drops of liquid soap in the bottle with the water. 

5. Break up an alka seltzer tablet and drop a small piece into bottle. With a parent or guardian’s help, IMMEDIATELY place the palm of your hand over the top to seal the bottle. 

6. Lift your hand off top of bottle and step back at least 6 feet to observe your geyser in action from a safe distance. What do you hear? What do you see? 

7. Enjoy the “pop” and eruption!

8. Repeat the steps above to conduct this experiment again. Try adjusting the variables of this experience to see how it affects the reaction of your geyser. Does the size of your alka seltzer affect your eruption? Was the eruption smaller or larger? Does the amount of water in your bottle affect your experiment? Try this experiment using less water. Try this experiment using 3 drops of soap to begin with. What happens if you add 10 drops of soap? 15? 20? Record your observations


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