RVery Best Nest

Come join Joe, Mallery & I, as we travel around the USA in our RVery Best Nest. God's Favor has been chasing us down, and we are enjoying all of His blessing's, that He has created for all to enjoy!

Monday, November 5, 2012

Devils Tower National Monument, Wyoming

Monday 10/15/2012

The next day we drove into Sundance, Wyoming. Sundance has a population of 1,182. The town name came from the Sun Dance ceremony's done by several North American Indian Nations. When Harry Longabaugh was let out of jail in Sundance in 1888, he was nicknamed the Sundance Kid.

Sundance has a population 1,182

After finding the Post Office in Sundance, we found Hwy. 14 to drive toDevils Tower National Monument.

Half way there we started to see it out in the distance.

America's First National Monument.

It was pretty impressive as we drove toward it.

This hill going there had a 7% downgrade. Glad we were driving the Honda instead of the bus.

Views of the valley below.

The dirt in this area is orange like Alabama.
Pretty views with the orange and blue sky!

Just outside the national park is a KOA. The KOA had reduces prices for the off season.

Devils Tower was declared the first National Monument in 1906 by  President Theodore Roosevelt

Vehicle Pass was $10, but we got in free because we had bought our National Park Pass earlier . The pass  had been paid for and we had made money at this point. There is also camping in the National Park for $12 a night or $6 a night with a Golden Age Access or Senior Access Pass. We didn't see the campground, so we don't know the site sizes or utilities provided.

As we entered into the park we saw a large field of prairie dogs.

At the Visitor Center we read about the old Indian folk lore about some girls that were out in the woods when some giant bear started to chase them. The girls found a rock and climbed on it and fell to their knees and started to pray to the Great Spirit to save them. The Great Spirit heard their prays and made the rock rise to the heavens. The giant bears could not climb the steep bluff and left deep claw marks in the tower. The Indians name for Devils Tower is Bear Lodge.

Me standing in front of the tower with Mallery in her kangaroo pouch,

There is a trail around Devils Tower that is 1.3 miles.

There are huge rocks scattered around the base of the butte.

Many of these columns have fallen from the butte.

Devils Tower sits high above, and while we walked around the trail, we got great views of the valley below.

As we walked around the tower, we could hear the voices of the climbers above.

Can you see the climbers? They are the specks 2/3 to the right of the butte.
Here is a close up of them. Joe's job is to carry the zoom lens, but he forgot it. This is a pretty good picture for not having the zoom. There are three climbers in this picture.

The tower stands 867 feet above the Visitor Center.

After walking around some more I took another picture of the three climbers. They were all on top of one of the columns this time.

We spotted some more climbers. They are on the far right edge of the tower.

You can almost see them in this picture.
Joe said it made him nervous just looking at them!

Devils Tower was first climbed by a rancher in 1893 by pounding wooded pegs into cracks.

A view of the valley half way around the tower. Most of the land around the tower has been held in the same families for 7 to 8 generations as cattle ranches. Before that, bison roamed the valleys until they were hunted to almost extinction.

As we came around the last corner of the tower we saw more climbers. Can you see them? Joe spotted them and pointed them out to me. They are almost to the top.

The first ascent with modern equipment was in 1937.

Today 100's of climbers climb Devils Tower each summer.

Dogs are not allowed on the trail, but I didn't know there was a trail to walk on, so I brought Mallery. Joe failed to communicate to me that there was a trail. I thought we were just going to drive and see a monument, then drive home. Luckily I had her pouch with me, and I carried her on the trail. She wanted to get down so bad, and kept whining and trying to climb out. It was too hot to leave her in the car.

On the way out of the park, we stopped to see the prairie dogs.

There are only about 2% of the prairie dog that there use to be 200 years ago.

Back in the car, I had the zoom lens, so I took a couple more pictures of some of the climbers from the entrance below.

You can see two climbers in this picture.
This climber is the one below the other.

Another climber on another one of the many different routes. Devils Tower is sacred land, so climbers are not allowed to climb it during the month of June during ceremonial times.

Looking out on the prairie dog field.

On our way home we continued our drive on Hwy. 24 to finish the scenic loop.

We entered into the town of Hulett.

This home sat above the town.

This antique shop had hundreds of antlers around the porch entrance.

Hulett was a cute little town, but we didn't have time to stop.

Hulett is a rancher's community.
More antlers.

Views as we continued the loop drive.
Our campground office told us to stop at Cindy B's for pie.  We stopped but darn, it was closed.

Cindy B's was in the town of Aladdin with a population of 15. I think this is the smallest town we have ever been in.

Almost back to Sundance and home again.

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