surface bacteria orange Grand Prismatic Pool third biggest hot spring in the world Yellowstone vivid colors


Location: Yellowstone National Park. Wyoming. US


The incredible vivid colors of this hot spring are the result of pigmented bacteria in the microbial mats that grow around the edges of the mineral-rich water. The color in the microbial mats depends on the ratio of chlorophyll to carotenoids and on the temperature of the water which favors one bacterium (color) over another. In the summer, the mats tend to be orange and red, while in the winter the mats are usually dark green.

If you think the view of Grand Prismatic Pool for this close is amazing, check out the panoramic view on this link! You will appreciate the unreal colors and shapes of this unique hot spring.

Here you can see other cool photographs of Yellowstone



View larger map