Friday, August 20, 2010

Off to Devil’s Tower, Wyoming

Thursday morning was a shock — foggy, misty, and a little muggy. I had to take one more view of the Little Missouri River near our campsite.
We decided to “shunpike” south on Hwy 85 to South Dakota. The fog was so bad in places, it’s a good thing we weren’t looking for much ‘cause it continued to be foggy even into South Dakota around noon at 66°. We finally saw some sunshine around 1:00pm.
The prairie is fascinating, impressive buttes and rock outcroppings, cattle and hay bales, but a critical absence of trees for this woodland girl. I can imagine a bunch of cowboys pushing a herd of cattle across these rolling hills though. And the night time sky must be filled with a million stars.
When we stopped in Belle Fourche SD, a couple approached us wanting to learn about our Casita. We gladly showed them all the great features and the modifications we’ve made. The Casita would fit their needs perfectly.
We headed west from Bell Fourche into Wyoming to see Devil’s Tower. The valley along State Road 34 is just gorgeous. And the first sight of the Devil’s Tower was unbelievable! We were still 5-6 miles away!
We parked the Casita and Kira in the campground in the Park and drove up to the Visitor’s Center/Gift Shop. Then we made the 1.3 mile trek around the base of the Tower. I took photos from every conceivable angle of that Tower, plus assorted boulders, lightening-struck tree trunks, and panoramic views.
I was surprised at the amount of fire damage — apparently due to lightening strikes (duh).
And seemed like a lot of people were anxious to climb to the top and repel back down (what no helo or gondola at the top to bring them back down??) Two climbers are just above the trees on the left side of middle in this photo.
Our campsite to the southeast of the Tower was peaceful and quiet, with cooling gusts of wind, an occasional deer, few campers nearby, under the trees looking up at the Tower.
We were up for the sunrise the next morning waiting for the sun to hit the Tower. Here the sun is just peaking over the trees to our east.
The morning sun causes the east side of the Tower to look totally different than in the afternoon.
Leaving the Park, headed for the Black Hills of South Dakota, we visited this Native American sculpture. Several different Nations consider the Devil’s Tower as very sacred ground, and this sculpture felt very powerful.

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