Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Day Twenty-three

Today we saw many iconic sights of the American west. Our first stop was the site of the Battle of Little Bighorn, Custer's Last Stand. We didn't stay very long, just walked through the visitor center. It once again brought home to us the horrors of how the European conquerors treated the native peoples. I hadn't realized that it includes a national cemetery, where any veteran can be buried, similar to Arlington in Virginia.

Our next diversion was to see Devil's Tower, made famous in the movie Close Encounters of the Third Kind. It was approximately a 40-mile loop off I-90 in Wyoming, and definitely worth it. Devil's Tower was the first National Monument, in 1906. 

Canyon view near Devil's Tower

One thing I wanted to be sure to visit on this trip is Mount Rushmore. We left I-90 and drove down through the Black Hills, including the resort town of Deadwood. We passed a beautiful lake along the way.

There isn't much to say about Mount Rushmore itself. We could have gone into the visitor center, but we just took a good look and turned around and left. It is truly impressive.

This tunnel was on the road near Mount Rushmore.

We had thought we would spend the night near Rapid City after coming out of the Black Hills, but a nice new bypass took us around the south side and we came out east of the town. So we went on to Wall, with the most famous drug store in the country (??? maybe....). We found an Econo Lodge with a pool and a refrigerator (two items missing from our Motel 6 last night). We wandered downtown and were overwhelmed and underwhelmed by the enormous variety of stuff available. It was just too much, so we went across the street to the Cactus Cafe and had supper. (Not worth mentioning or photographing, believe me.) I greatly enjoyed a swim after supper, the first since we left the Banff area. Now we are watching the Olympics and contemplating a loop through the Badlands in the morning on our way to Sioux Center, Iowa, and a night with old Woodstock friends.

1 comment:

  1. Deadwood! Awesome. HBO had a great show about that town back when it was still the "wild west."


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