Devils Tower

Trip Start Jul 24, 2010
Trip End Aug 03, 2010

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Where I stayed
Devils Tower KOA campground.

Flag of United States  , Wyoming
Thursday, July 29, 2010

Woke up before the alarm but didn't think falling back to sleep seemed likely so we got up.  Things weren't as wet as we feared they might be.  We packed up and were on our way by 7:00 am.  We stopped for gas in Cody and saw in the newspaper that one person was killed and two more were injured by a bear.  The people were taken to the Cody hospital and it is being called the worst unprovoked bear attack in Montana in the last 20 years.  In Cody we stopped to get some breakfast at McDonalds.  The next town we passed through was called Greybull.  We entered the Bighorn National Forest and Big Horn Mountains.  The scenery was beautiful.  Before 9:30 we had made our way to Shell Falls.  The "visitor center" wasn't open yet. We took some pictures, did the 1/8 mile trail, then continued on our way.  Next, we saw a sign about sheep.  Sure enough there was one cowboy "herding" thousands of sheep.  They were right in the middle of the road.  We had to stop or slow down several times.  Next we saw some real cowboys herding cattle.  We stopped for pictures because it isn't everyday that you get to see a real cowboy.  Finally we reached the interstate.  We stopped at the Walmart in Sheridan, WY.  We drove further before coming to Ft. Kearny State Historis Site.  It cost to get in, but the battlefield didn't so we drove an extra couple of miles to the battlefield and had a nice view to eat lunch.  We continued along and made better time once we got on the interstate.  We made bets as to how far away we would be able to see Devils Tower.  I was closer at a guess of 10 miles.  We caught our first glimpse at about 15 road miles out.  Once we got there, we stopped at the little general store first.  Then we went and checked in at the KOA.  We got to choose our tent site and it was a perfect view of the tower.  Next we drove up to the base of the tower.  We went to the visitor center, got my passport stamped, then did our first trail.  Miles climbed the entire boulder field as high as he was allowed to go without a climbing permit.  I stayed at the bottom and took pictures.  We did the tower trail which was 1.3 miles.  We drove to the picnic area with a great view and ate supper.  Then we went on another trail about 1.3 miles through a prarie dog town.  There were a couple deer on the trail but the closer we got the more the started to run away.  Back at the campgrounds, Miles swam for awhile then we both got strawberry slushes.  At 9:00 the campground showed the movie "Close Encounters of the Third Kind".  We only watched part, then went and tried to take pictures of the full moon.  The stars are supposed to be amazing at Devils Tower so we set the alarm for 1:30 and drove to the base of the tower.  The moon was too bright and negatively effected the view of the stars. 
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