We’re Back

We pushed hard and made it all the way back from South Dakota to the Seattle area in just two days. It was a little crazy, going from the great plains to the Rockies to the desert to the Cascades to rain forest in just hours of driving.

On the way back we detoured to alpha geek destination Devil’s Tower, Wyoming. It’s the starring location of Close Encounters of the Third Kind. Why aliens would choose to come to earth at Devil’s tower (or Roswell, NM), I wouldn’t know. if I were an alien, I’d choose Beijing, Rome, or Mexico City – historically significant AND highly populated. I hope Zach and Ben don’t start sculpting their mashed potatoes into tower shapes now.

Devil\'s Tower
Devil’s Tower, Wyoming

We also stopped and spent a quiet hour at the site of the Battle of the Little Big Horn, in Montana. The battleground is peaceful now, the rolling hills are blanketed in waving grass, wildflowers, and sprinkled with gravestones. A Crow Indian ranger related the history of the events leading up to the battle and described the conflict itself – she was a very good storyteller and made the site come alive.

Here they lie
Cavalry soldier’s grave

Here they lie 2
Cheyenne warrior’s grave

It was a lot of driving and we are very glad to be back home. Our doggies missed us and were happy to see us.

Grave site photos by Zach – who is now going through his 10,000 (seriously) photos from the trip to post a gallery up on his deviant art site.
Mileage total: 615 miles for a total of 2,945 miles
Road reading: The Dragon’s Nine Sons by Chris Roberson
Gas price: back in the land of $4.27 a gallon :( but we heard rumors of $3.69 a gallon in Cheyenne, WY

7 Responses to “We’re Back”

  1. Nathan Says:

    I really don’t know how anyone can read in a car without a barf bag.

  2. Jeri Says:

    When I was a kid I used to get motion sick every time we went anywhere longer than about 15 minutes – but now I never have the problem, thank goodness. Carnival rides – ANY carnival ride – are a different story, though.

    We did bring some audio books too, but I usually don’t have the patience for those. I read much faster than someone can read to me, I still have Dan Simmons The Terror to listen to.

  3. Vince Says:

    I can read anywhere, anytime, so I’m fortunate.

    I visited Devil’s Tower less than a year after Close Encounters was filmed. It’s an awesome place even without the movie connection – it was the first national monument, it’s sacred to many Native Americans, and it’s probably a volcanic plug.

    Welcome back!

  4. Jeri Says:

    Vince, it’s set in such a spectacular area – we spent a lot of time with our binoculars out looking at details and features and hiking around for different perspectives. (OK, Zach disdained the binocs in favor of his zoom lens… LOL) It was great to see it up close.

    I think I’m going to to pick up a couple of roadside geology books. My dad used to have a huge collection of them, I’m not sure what happened to them, but brushing back up on my knowledge would, as Janiece says, help stave off the mad cow.

  5. MWT Says:

    It IS a volcanic plug. ;) Sadly, I’ve never seen it up close, though I’ve driven past it a couple times. Somewhere I have a picture where it’s a barely visible on the horizon.

    Also, that grave marker says it’s a Cheyenne grave, not a Sioux grave…

  6. Jeri Says:

    Hmmm… for some reason I thought the Cheyenne were a band of the Sioux nation but I was wrong. They are their own nation, allied with the Lakota Sioux.

    I should do better research before posting. :P

  7. MWT Says:

    Much of my 4th grade was taken up by researching the plains Indians. My grades sucked horribly that year but I remember the stuff I learned that I care about. :)