Friday, October 12, 2012

A Devil of a Tower

The final national park we visited was Devils Tower in Wyoming. In 1906 this soaring landmark was the first to be declared a U.S. National Monument. Dave remembered visiting the tower as a youth and of course recalled its inclusion in popular culture.
Can you spot the climbers? 

The kiddos were amazed by this structure. We spotted it as we drove along the road and marveled at how impressive it appeared. Dave mentioned hiking around it as a kid, but he remembered it as a long hike. I found some informations indicating there was a quick route around the circumference and a park ranger confirmed this. We set off to explore. The kiddos spotted a few animals and most of the answers to their junior ranger guides as we walked. The path was paved and quite easy. We saw climbers ascending the face of the tower. The kiddos wondered how the climbers scaled such a mountain. We read about the tactics many climbers use and noted that the tower is a popular climbing spot. Dave was fascinated by the many fallen rocks which surrounded the tower. I noticed that many were hexagonal, and there was a placard discussing this. It made it very real when we could touch the mammoth fallen rocks and try to determine where they had sheared off the tower.




The climber was descending the side of the tower



We ended our time at Devils Tower in the learning center reading about the significance of this site to so many different cultures. The kiddos were enthralled by the Native American stories and prayer flags. We finished up the day talking with a very kind park ranger who shared other stories. The kiddos then earned their badge, and we set off for more exploring.


2 comments:

  1. WOW. I remember going there as a kid and the hike around it always seemed long. I think I forgot how gigantic it really is. We used to stay at the KOA at the base of the tower. So glad you got to see it and the kids liked it!

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  2. So cool - totally remember it from Close Encounters :)

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