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

Establishing the numbering conventions of California's chargeable Interstates

The Federal Highway Aid Act of 1956 brought the Interstate Highway System into existence which would largely be constructed by Federal Highway Administration fund matching.  The Interstate Highway System was deliberately numbered to run opposite the established conventions of the US Route System.  While the Interstate Highway numbering conventions are now well established there was a period during the late 1950s where they were still being finalized.  This blog examines the history of the establishing of the chargeable Interstate Highway route numbers in California.  The above blog cover depicts the Interstate Highway route numbers requested by the Division of Highways in the Los Angeles area during November 1957.  The establishment of the numbering conventions of California's chargeable Interstates The Interstate Highway System was not created in a vacuum by way of the passage of the 1956 Federal Highway Aid Act.  The beginning of the Interstate Highway System can be found in the

Legend of the Ridge Route; a history of crossing the mountains between the Los Angeles Basin and San Joaquin Valley from wagon trails to Interstates

Over the past two decades I've crossed the Interstate 5 corridor from Los Angeles north over the Sierra Pelona Mountains and Tehachapi Range to San Joaquin Valley what seems to be an immeasurable number of times.  While Interstate 5 from Castaic Junction to Grapevine via Tejon Pass today is known to most as "The Grapevine" it occupies a corridor which has been traversed by numerous historic highways.  The most notable of these highways is known as the "Ridge Route."  This article is dedicated to the Ridge Route and the various highways that preceded it.  This blog is part of the larger Gribblenation US Route 99 Page.  For more information pertaining to the other various segments of US Route 99 and it's three-digit child routes check out the link the below. Gribblenation US Route 99 Page Ridge Route corridor introdution The Ridge Route as originally envisioned was a segment of highway which was completed in 1915 between the northern Los Angeles city limit

California State Route 210 (legacy of California State Route 30)

  California State Route 210 is a forty-mile-long limited access State Highway located in Los Angeles County and San Bernardino County.  California State Route 210 exists as a non-Interstate continuation of Interstate 210 and the Foothill Freeway between California State Route 57 in San Dimas east to Interstate 10 Redlands.  California State Route 210 was previously designated as California State Route 30 until the passage of 1998 Assembly Bill 2388, Chapter 221.  Since 2009 the entirety of what was California State Route 30 has been signed as California State Route 210 upon the completion of the Foothill Freeway extension.  Below westbound California State Route 210 can be seen crossing the Santa Ana River as the blog cover.  California State Route 30 can be seen for the last time on the 2005 Caltrans Map below.  Part 1; the evolution of California State Route 30 into California State Route 210 What was to become California State Route 30 (CA 30) entered the State Highway System duri