Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Devil's Tower, Wyoming

How many of us remember 1977's iconic Close Encounters of the Third Kind? Remember the scene of Richard Dreyfuss building the mountain out of mashed potatoes? We can all hum the classic notes that summon the Mother Ship, can't we?

It's one of our family's favorite movies, and since we were up in that neck of the woods on vacaation we took a side trip over to Wyoming to visit Devil's Tower were the climax of the movie takes place. There were no signs of Steven Spielberg or his cast of Richard Dreyfuss, Fran├žois Truffaut, Teri Garr, Melinda Dillon, but we had a ton of fun checking out this classic piece of rock.

Devil's Tower is a National Monument, if you can believe that. Part of our National Park Service, Devil's Tower was once thought to be an extinct volcano, but they now know it's what's referred to as an igneous intrusion. I think that's scientific talk for tall rock!

 The old American Indian legend is that a group of children were playing (seven sisters and their brother) when the boy suddenly turned into a bear and began to chase his sisters. The girls ran to the stump of a great tree which bade them to get onto it. As they did it began to rise into the air. The bear came to kill them, and as the stump rose up the bear clawed it, scoring it all around as it rose up. The seven sisters were borne into the sky, and became the stars of the Big Dipper.

When you look at Devil's Tower, you can see how this story came to be. We saw mountain climbers making their way up, they have Junior Ranger programs that hike around the base, and many trails to enjoy the area. And, if you are looking for signs of those aliens, just down the mountain are several places where you can find all kinds of fun items to satisfy that itch as well.

Here are some photos of our visit!

 Even from the highway at a distance, it's impressive.

 There are so many exciting and beautiful things to see in our country.
Glad we came here!

 Kevin and AJ with Devil's Tower behind them.
It was a hot day too!

 Stan and I enjoyed the chance to bring our family here.

A final look at Devil's Tower before we take off.


Rach said...

I remember that movie!! The story about the bear is interesting. Glad you are enjoying your vacation!

Tiffany said...

Looks like such a memorable vacation!! So glad you had this fun opportunity!!

Mel said...

We never did make it up there when we went to Mt Rushmore. But I love mash potatoes!!!! :)