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Artists' Paintpots, located close to the road between Madison and Norris, is by far the most gorgeous and most popular thermal area of Gibbon Geyser Basin. A one mile loop trail, partly persisting of boardwalks, gives easy and secure access to all features. Artists' Paintpots is devided into two sections, a ground level, where outstanding colorful hot springs can be found, and an elevated terrace alongside Paintpot Hill, where the mud pots or paint pots are located. Unfortunately, only two of all features, Blood Geyser and Flash Spring, do have official names. For all others I have used the code from the RCN database.
The view from Paintpot Hill explains more than a thousand words why this area has been named Artists' Paintpots.
Here we will follow the loop trail counterclockwise to present the main features. The first spring you encounter on the lefthand side is GAPNN023.
Across the boardwalk from GAPNN023 the rusty brown spring GAPNN021 can be seen.
On the same side GAPNN020 follows, showing finely graduated pastel colors.
The third in a line is GAPNN003 with a strangely dottet surface.
A bare, dark gray to red colored area with three exceptional springs attracts more attention from vistors. GAPNN011, the first spring, contains a light bluish gray, boiling slurry. Up to and including 2010 it had nearly the same appearance as the following GAPNN006 and GAPNN007.
The other two springs, GAPNN007 and GAPNN006, exhibit a nice bluish oplascent glow.
After climbing the terrace at Paintpot Hill you come across two large mud pots on the right side. Because of the pinkish tinted mud, they are also called paint pots. So to speak, the paint pots of Artists' Paintpots. In summer the mud usually dries out a little bit and thickens, so the bubbling and spouting activity declines.
Subsequently, the hematite rich red pool GAPNN058 and a cluster of the springs GAPNN057 and GAPNN056 line the trail.
GAPNN053 would look very much like the springs before if it were not dried up.
The row of muddy features ends with the pinkish, crater shaped paint pot GAPNN048.
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