Enjoy a Close Encounter with Devils Tower National Monument

Devils Tower

Devils Tower National Monument (DTNM) located in Crook County, northeastern Wyoming, was the first geological formation to be declared a national monument. Rising 1,267 ft. above the Belle Fourche River DTNM is in the Bear Lodge Mountains, part of the Black Hills Mountain Range.  The tower is considered scared to the Northern Plains Indians and indigenous peoples.  The monument is located near the communities of Hulett, Sundance and Aladdin; https://www.nps.gov/deto/planyourvisit/maps.htm.

DEVILS DETAILS

  • First national monument established on September 24, 1906 by President Theodore Roosevelt
  • The monuments boundary is approximately 1,347 acres
  • Also known as Bear Lodge Butte, or “Bear’s Tipi” (Home of the Bear)
  • Annual visitation approximately 500,000
  • Visitor’s center was built in the 1930’s by the CCC (Civilian Conservation Corp)

DELVE INTO THE DEVIL

TOWER TRAIL
  • Hike the 1.3 mile paved trail for spectacular close-up views of the tower and surrounding boulder fields
  • Moderate elevation change
  • Numerous points of interest and interpretative exhibits along the trail depicting the natural and cultural history of the park
  • Most popular hike in the park and is often crowded
  • Other trails, https://www.nps.gov/deto/planyourvisit/hiking.htm
PRAIRIE DOG TOWN
  • Located in the Belle Fourche River Hub
  • Bustling community of 600+ residents
  • Great area to view other critters
JOYNER RIDGE STAR GAZING
  • Optimal stargazing in the secluded northern part of the park
  • Minimal light pollution
  • Left onto gravel road before Visitors Center to reach the parking lot and trailhead
PRAYER OFFERINGS
  • Common modern-day ritual connecting Indians to their sacred land
  • Colorful strips of cloth tied to trees or placed near rocks
  • Ceremonial objects that represent a personal connection to the site by the person that placed them
  • Scared religious offerings to be treated with respect
  • Read oral histories and sacred narratives detailing ancient peoples relationship with the monument, https://www.nps.gov/deto/learn/historyculture/people.htm.

SLEEPING WITH THE DEVIL

  • Belle Fourche River Campground has 46 camp sites
  • Water and restrooms, but no full hook-ups
  • Camp sites have picnic tables and grills
  • No reservations; first come, first served basis

DEVILS DISTINCTION

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