Hi everyone, it’s Di from You, Me and The Dock. I want to tell you what I have “Seen through my eyes” while visiting Devils Tower, Wyoming. I left Montana in mid-September and drove south to the great state of Wyoming.
The western plains offer the clearest blue skies with cotton colored clouds(pictured below) gently hovering overhead. The amazing views on the way to my next destination – Devils Tower, were postcard perfect. I can’t wait to share my adventure with you all.
Devils Tower was declared a United States National Monument on September 24, 1906, by President Theodore Roosevelt. The elevation at its highest peak is 5,112 feet above sea level. The Tower’s solid structure is composed mostly of sedimentary rock, dark red sandstone, and maroon siltstone that is imbedded with shale. This can mostly be seen along the Belle Fourche River (pictured right).
Devils Tower was named in 1875 by a misinterpretation from Colonel Richard Irving Dodge. It somehow was translated into the name “Bad God’s Tower”, and eventually led to its current iconic name Devils Tower. It has also been given many tribal names from the local Indians. The Lakota called it “Mato Tipila”, which means “Bear Lodge.” Other names given are Grey Horn Butte, He Hota Paha, Bear Rock, Bear Mountain, Tree Rock, and Grizzly Bear Mountain to mention just a few.
The legends about Devils Tower are abundant and have been passed down through many generations of storytelling around the campfire. The posted sign at the trailhead explains the required respect needed for a successful hike.
How many of you remember the 1977 movie “Close Encounters of the Third Kind” ? This brought a lot of attention to the National Monument here in Wyoming. However, before the movie’s icon became a landmark on the silver screen, the tribal people regarded this area as a very sacred site.
Hundreds of climbers scale the sheer rock of Devils Tower each summer. There are many documented climbing routes covering every side of the tower. Past climbers have mapped various vertical cracks and accessible columns. All climbers need to register with the park ranger on duty before and after attempting a successful climb.
The first ascent using modern climbing techniques were performed by Fritz Wiessner who summited with William P. House and Lawrence Conveney in 1937. As for me, I will not be “Seeing through my eyes” any of the tower’s vertical walls that close.
Well everyone it’s time to wrap up this short, but very adventurous article. I hope you’ve enjoyed “Seeing through my eyes” and learning about one of America’s incredible National Monuments. Remember to be spontaneous and take that vacation you’ve always wanted to See through your own eyes.
Author: Diana Blevins
Photography: Diana Blevins
Associate Editor: Maureen Scopel
Article Layout: Anthony Scopel
Technical Mastering & Support: Matt Kemper
“Always continue to Dream, Live, Laugh, and Travel Indeed.”