Wednesday, July 27, 2005

Devil's Tower

The landscape is now changing from the vast prairies to much hillier terrain. We are skirting the Black Hills formation in western South Dakota. As we continue westward into Wyoming the hills are on each side of us as we follow a valley with very long grades and descents. The view is magnificent. We pass Sturgis, South Dakota where the annual motorcycle gathering takes place every August. This is a major event with bikers from all over the country meeting to show off their bikes and see others. One billboard announces that the Tuttle Family from Orange County Choppers will be there showing off their latest products. Billboards are under construction one after the other along I-90 with mostly Budweiser ads on them. That should give you an idea of what this event will be like. We pass on Sturgis and continue westward. Our goal is the Devil's Tower where we plan to spend the night.

Arriving at Devil's Tower we are astonished at this bizarre geological formation. It is the lava plug of an ancient volcano that is standing after the cone shaped mountain surrounding it was eroded away. This is a magnificent place and the tower has the feel of an ancient sacred place. We see it from our camper and drove to various observation points. This is a very special place. In one location we saw native american prayer cloths tied in a small tree. The tower and the surrounding lands are sacred to several indian tribes and we feel that ourselves. The location is fairly far from the interstate highway and is in the Black Hills National Forest. We saw several deer and as we look out of our front window in the Mothership we see a pasture of gently rolling hills with horses grazing as the sun sets on the Devil's Tower. There is an outdoor showing of "Close Encounters of the Third Kind" in a little while. We are going to attend for a bit to relive that old classic movie that was filmed here. We both are pretty tired because of the time changes and the driving so neither of us anticipates sticking it out for the whole movie. The movie starts at 9 pm Mountain Time and that is 11 pm Eastern Daylight Time which our bodies are still running on. But, how could we pass up an outdoor showing of that move at the Devil's Tower? I ask you, "How cool is that?"