After an eventful arrival, we opted to spend two nights at peaceful Devil’s Tower (our first KOA campground of the trip; very serene and very few bugs!). After a supply run to nearby Hulett, we headed to the monument for an afternoon hike. And we weren’t disappointed. The monument is just a mind-boggling work of nature, 6, 7 and 8-side columns of rock comprise the monolith and columns that have fallen over the years litter the landscape below.

The tower has been a sacred place for Native Americans for years (and each year they ask climbers to voluntary not climb in June as it's the holiest month at the Tower; sadly, there were a few climbers disrespecting the request on the day we visited). Through our binoculars, we saw remnants of the wooden stake ladder ranchers used to ascend the tower in the late 1800s, and could really appreciate the details of the columnar structures of the monument.
We were completely entertained by a prarie dog colony on the way out of the park:

We were back at camp in late afternoon and grilled some beef spiedies for dinner. One of the attractions of the campground we picked was that they play “Close Encounters of the Third Kind” every night (the Tower plays an important role in the film and several scenes were filmed at the campground), but sadly the projector was broken! Next time….

Stats from day 14:

  • States traveled through: 1
  • Day 14 miles: 37
  • Total trip miles: 4417