Road trip of few National Parks and Monumentsin USA - Day -3

Asha Desh By Asha Desh, 28th Sep 2015 | Follow this author | RSS Feed | Short URL http://nut.bz/28igmjgq/
Posted in Wikinut>Travel>North America>United States>Wyoming

Seven day road trip across four states in USA. Wake up to different sites each day, and in the process, rekindle the inner self. - South Dakota and Wyoming.

South Dakota.

Day 3: South Dakota and Wyoming.
There are things in nature that engender an awful quiet in the heart of man. Devils Tower is one of them
Sites seen: Wild West town of Deadwood, Devils Tower National Monument, Don King’s Western Museum, Sheridan.
Considering the long day we had had the previous day, we got a reprieve, and started the day a bit leisurely, at 8.30am. We toured the Wild West town of Deadwood in South Dakota in the morning. It is a small town, surrounded by the “Black Hills” mountain range. It gets its name from the dense trees, which appear black from a distance. It is amazing to see the lay out of the town. It looks like a scene from a Hollywood Western movie. I know I have this backwards, and yes, it is Hollywood, that has copied these scenes. But it is incredulous to see that such places actually still exist.

Devils Tower, Wyoming.

Our next stop was in Wyoming, at the Devils Tower. This massive stone column is considered sacred by many Native Americans. The entry drive to this is remarkable, and one can’t help clicking photos constantly. Thank God for digitalization of photography! One could get unlimited pictures. It is the first National Monument to be so declared, by Teddy Roosevelt. One is struck by the majesty of its looming height (more than 1200 feet) amidst lush green surroundings. This was the backdrop used by Steven Spielberg in his movie “Close Encounters of the Third Kind”. Devils Tower has rich folklore history. Various versions of the legendary story are told, but the most popular one is about eight siblings; a brother and seven sisters. According to that folklore, the brother became a bear, and started chasing his sisters, where upon, they climbed on a tree stump which grew upwards and carried them away into the sky. Some marks on the Devils Tower are said to be the claw marks of the bear, when it tried to climb on it. It was originally known as Bears Lodge in the native Indian language, but due to poor translation became known as Devils Tower. It continues to be known as such, in spite of pleas from the Native Americans to change the name. One can see a variety of plants and shrubs and plenty of wild life. Black tailed prairie dogs live near the park entrance. It is a delightful sight to see so many of them running around. Devils Tower also offers a multitude of activities. There are picnic spots and campsites of the rustic kind. Short hiking trails as well as long ones that go around the tower. The really adventurous ones can register and participate in rock climbing. We saw a few climbers when we were out there, but contented ourselves with hiking.
Devils Tower was originally thought to be the core of an ancient volcano. Recent studies suggest it is an igneous intrusion. Scott Momaday’s quote “There are things in nature that engender an awful quiet in the heart of man. Devils Tower is one of them” sums it up well.

Don King's Museum, Wyoming.


After a nice lunch, we followed a scenic drive and arrived at Don King's Museum in Sheridan, which showcases years of Wild West history. There were many handmade Native Indian artifacts and artwork. There were cowboy memorabilia, from all kinds of saddles to cowboy boots, and we got to watch them work on leather belts. Looking at the intricacy of work involved in making these pieces one could understand their cost. What I liked about the place was, there was absolutely no push for sales, and the craftsmen patiently and willingly explained their work. We had time to walk around the small town.
We halted in Billings, Montana, our fourth state on tour, for the night. Compared to the previous day, the day had been lighter, but was welcome. We all needed that time to relax before the next journey.

Tags

Narrative Writing, Travel, Writing

Meet the author

author avatar Asha Desh
Freelance writer. My genre is a mixed bag . My articles include Reflections on life, Humor with meaningful messages, Travel, Light reading and Fiction.

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Comments

author avatar Mark Gordon Brown
28th Sep 2015 (#)

I love reading about tourist destinations and travel locations, but suggest you use a preview image picture. None of your pictures are showing for me, is it my browser, are they working for you?

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author avatar Asha Desh
30th Sep 2015 (#)

Thank you for the suggestion. I am new to Wikinut and am trying to navigate the site. Going forward, I will add preview pictures.

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