Skip to main content

Wyoming Road Trip Day 6: Devils Tower National Monument


Today was Rapid City to Cheyenne via Devils Tower National Park.  The weather was definitely much colder than it was the first half of the trip - and the wind didn't help either.

Route: I-190, I-90, US 14, WY 24, US 14, I-90, WY 59, I-25

Photo Set on Flickr: Devils Tower National Monument

Devils Tower as seen from US 14.

Outside the entrance to Devils Tower National Monument at Wyoming State Highway 110.

If Rocky Mountain National Park amazed me, Devils Tower National Monument inspired me.  From the moment it first came into view on US 14 - and during my hike around the tower - I continually was in awe of it.

Devils Tower rises 867 from its base and 1267' above the Belle Fourche River.

Native American names for Devils Tower include Bear's Lodge or Bear's House.

Devils Tower is the United States' first national monument.  The Antiquities Act of 1906 authorized the President of the United States "to declare by public proclamation historic landmarks, historic and prehistoric structures, and other objects of historic or scientific interest that are situated upon the lands owned or controlled by the Government of the United States to be national monuments, and may reserve as a part thereof parcels of land, the limits of which in all cases shall be confined to the smallest area compatible with proper care and management of the objects to be protected."

"The Window" 

Devils Tower is the largest example of columnar jointing in the world.

The establishment of Devils Tower as a National Monument came from efforts led by Wyoming Senator Francis E. Warren and Congressman Frank W. Mondell.  Their efforts resulted in President Theodore Roosevelt declaring Devils Tower as the first National Monument on September 24, 1906.  This designation preserved the natural wonder from any future development.

Rock climbing is a popular activity at Devils Tower.

At the park, I did the 1.3 mile paved Tower Loop Trail.  This trail runs the closest to the tower - and during Summer months is the most popular.  With it being November, I pretty much had the entire hike to myself.  It seemed like along every step, I found a new vantage point, a new detail, a new majesty to see.


I took so many photos that it did allow me to try various filters, settings, etc. in Lightroom.  As you can tell, I got carried away. 

There are plenty of other trails at Devils Tower - many through the prairie and along the Belle Fourche River.  These trails offer more distanced views of the tower and include the entire prairie landscape.  Of course, there are numerous rock climbing trails on the tower itself.

The trip back to Cheyenne was another great example of the openness of Wyoming.

Wyoming 59 is pretty much a straight shot connecting Gillette and Douglas.  Other than a town called Bill, it is wide open with more windmills than services along the 100 or so miles between the two towns.

Windmills and snow along Wyoming 59.


Interstate 25 South offered a lot of scenery - and on this day a lot of wind.  Stopping at the Rest Area at US 18 in Orin was quite blustery.  



We got into Cheyenne about 3:30 or so.  Again, I was exhausted to really go out and explore the town.  We did stop at a local brewery for pizza and a beer and drove around town a little bit.  Cheyenne seems like a great small town that I'd like to see more of.  



Photos not watermarked - taken by post author.

2021 Wyoming Road Trip Site Navigation:

Also at Gribblenation:




Comments

Unknown said…
SUCH A BEAUTIFUL TRIP!! I LOVE WYOMING!! BEEN THERE A COUPLE TMES!! A MUST SEE!!!
THANKS, ENJOY YOUR TRIP! AND BE SAFE!!

Popular posts from this blog

Deer Isle Bridge in Maine

As graceful a bridge that I ever set my eyes upon, the Deer Isle Bridge (officially known as the Deer Isle-Sedgwick Bridge) surprisingly caught my eye as I was driving around coastal Maine one Saturday afternoon. About 35 miles south of Bangor, Maine , the Deer Isle Bridge connects the Blue Hill Peninsula of Downeast Maine with Little Deer Isle over the Eggemoggin Reach on ME 15 between the towns of Sedgwick and Deer Isle . It should be noted that Little Deer Isle is connected to Deer Isle by way of a boulder lined causeway, and there is a storied regatta that takes place on the Eggemoggin Reach each summer. But the Deer Isle Bridge holds many stories, not just for the vacationers who spend part of their summer on Deer Isle or in nearby Stonington , but for the residents throughout the years and the folks who have had a hand bringing this vital link to life.   The Deer Isle Bridge was designed by David Steinman and built by the Phoenix Bridge Company of Phoenixville,

Former US Route 99 through Athlone and the last Wheeler Ridge-Sacramento corridor expressway

Athlone was a siding of the Southern Pacific Railroad located in Merced County on the alignment of what was US Route 99 between the cities of Chowchilla and Merced.  The Athlone corridor of US Route 99 was one of the first in San Joaquin Valley to fully upgraded to four lane expressway standards.  The Athlone expressway corridor was inherited by California State Route 99 when US Route 99 was truncated to Ashland, Oregon during June 1965.  The four-lane expressway through Athlone was the last segment of what had been US Route 99 in the Wheeler Ridge-Sacramento corridor to be bypassed by a freeway.  The Athlone expressway corridor was bypassed by the modern California State Route 99 freeway in 2016.  Despite being put on a road diet and narrowed what was the Athlone expressway corridor still displays evidence of being part of US Route 99.   Above the blog cover photo displays the Athlone expressway corridor of US Route 99 south of Merced as depicted in the July 1939 California Highways &

Hidden California State Route 710 and the Pasadena Gap in the Long Beach Freeway

Infamous and the subject of much controversy the Pasadena Gap in the Long Beach Freeway has long existed as a contentious topic regarding the completion of Interstate 710 and California State Route 710.  While the Pasadena Gap of the Long Beach Freeway effectively has been legislatively blocked the action only came after decades of controversy.  While the Pasadena Gap of the Long Beach Freeway is fairly well known what many don't know is that a small segment was actually constructed south Interstate 210 and the Foothill Freeway.  This disconnected segment of the Long Beach Freeway exists as the unsigned and largely hidden California State Route 710.  On June 29, 2022 the California Transportation Commission relinquished California State Route 710 to the city of Pasadena.  The blog cover above depicts a southward view on the completed Pasadena stub segment of the Long Beach Freeway which ends at California Boulevard.   Part 1; the history of the Pasadena Gap of the Long Beach Freewa