A Weekly Offering of This n That

Rainy Day is my alter ego. She is the little angel that sits on one shoulder and whispers in my ear to forgo that 6" piece of triple chocolate fudge with the four scoops of ice cream on it; she is also the little devil who sits on my other shoulder and convinces me that I can eat just one bite of each and be satisfied, and then laughs with such great abandon when in fact, I eat the whole thing, she falls off my shoulder. Mostly, Rainy Day helps me see the humor in living and, mostly, she encourages me down the right path. Not necessarily the straight and narrow one (how fun is that?) but the path that offers the most adventure and fun.

Monday, April 14, 2014

A Side Trip to Devils Tower

As promised last week, a side trip to Devils Tower. But first, a message from our sponsor! That would be the book, "Madame Dorion: Her Journey to the Oregon Country."

"I enjoyed the book very much, could not put it down. I've recently traveled parts of the trail she traveled, and often wondered why our local park is named for Madame Dorion. I liked the descriptions of daily life for the trappers and hunters. Seldom do we see a woman's view. Even though the woman's view is reflected from actual diaries from other male trappers, it rings true. The book is a good representation of various cultures who must learn to live side by side, and interact for survival." –CL

Don't forget Mother's Day is coming—sooner than you think! This little book is the perfect gift—a story about a mother with indomitable spirit for a mother who raised you right, showing her true spirit. Or grit. ;-)

Now back to our regularly scheduled blogramming:

Sidekick Judith & her two Flat Grandsons
I found no mention in the journals and books I read that the Astorians travelled by what is today known as Devil's Tower. Prior to 1875 when it was named Devils Tower during an expedition led by Col. Richard Irving Dodge due to an interpreter who misinterpreted the name to mean Bad God's Tower. (The apostrophe was deleted following a geographic naming standard.)

If the early trappers visited the tower, there is no record of it, and no graffiti to show for it, and they were great for writing/carving their names and the year visited on anything they found that wouldn't run away. Frankly, I'm surprised I've never heard of a trapper named "Kilroy." The first documented non Native visitors were members of CPT Wm. F. Raynolds' expedition to Yellowstone in 1859.

Devils Tower from the North (I think)
Devils Tower from the South
Tribes of the area, including Arapaho, Crow, Cheyenne, Kiowa, Lakota, and Shoshone had their own cultural and geographical ties to the monolith before the white men came along. These names include: Aloft on a Rock (Kiowa), Bear's House (Cheyenne), Bear's Lair (Cheyenne, Crow), Home of Bears (Crow), Bear's Lodge (Cheyenne, Lakota), Bear's Lodge Butte (Lakota), Bear's Tipi (Arapaho, Cheyenne), Tree Rock (Kiowa), and Grizzly Bear Lodge (Lakota).

In all probability, the Astorians were a tad too far north to see the tower. We, however, made a side trip to see it, and were not disappointed. We drove around it, but did not go into Park itself. Undoubtedly, we missed a great deal of information, but wanted to get back on the road.

It really does just jut up from the plain
The Tower stands 5,114 feet into the air, and is quite impressive. If you check the Wikipedia site below, you will find a great deal of information about the Geological history, Native American folklore, and if you're so inclined, information about climbing the tower.

Close up of the layers
If you watched the movie "Close Encounters of the Third Kind" you undoubtedly recognize the tower. If you haven't seen the movie, get thee to Netflix! Do not pass Go, and do not collect $200!

Type "Devils Tower Wyoming" into your favorite Search Engine to find all the information you will ever want, and then some, about this intriguing monument.

for most of my source material for this blog.)

Next week we finally reach the Powder River – an inch deep and a mile wide. ;-)
After this one, we headed back to our trip

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