Day 9

Out of Custer State Park, up through Deadwood, west to Devil's Tower, over the Bighorns, stopping in Cody, Wyoming.

States: SD (segment start), Wyoming (segment end)
Total Miles: 3376
Time Zones: still in Mountain, 3 total


Adios Custer and Blackhills. I headed up to I-90 and over to Devil's Tower in Wyoming. I drove up through Deadwood, home to Wild Bill Hickoc (in the Cemetery). Does anyone know how he died? Does anyone know what the "dead man's hand" is? To answer the latter, for my interesting factoid section, it's Ace's and 8's (and a jack) in poker. I didn't do much in Deadwood, but on my way out, I passed Tatanka. What is Tatanka you ask? Well it means buffalo in Lakota Indian and it is Kevin Costner's tribute to the Lakota Indians and the bison. I just happened to show up on it's opening day for the season (second season). Interesting little place and they have big plans for it in the future, including a resort and train that runs to some town I can't think of the name of at the moment. If you ever find yourself gambling in Deadwood, I suggest taking a short break and heading up to Tatanka. For the Sturgis Road Rally in August, there will be a celebrity ride that will head out of Sturgis and over to Tatanka/Deadwood with Costner at the lead, FYI.

Then it was off to Devil's Tower, a climbers mecca I've come to find out. There were climbers all over the thing.

Thanks to another route hand picked by my sister, I headed out over the Bighorn Mountains and down through the Bighorn Basin to Cody, Wyoming. Cody, named after "Buffalo" Bill Cody. I feel like I need to head to Tombstone and Dodge to complete this section of the trip. The drive was fantastic. Actually, ever since I got to the western side of Iowa, the drive has been fantastic. Everyone should gas up the family truckster and drive the part of America.

Approaching Devil's Tower:

Only a couple climbers in this shot:

Approaching the Bighorns:

Heading up the Bighorns. Each of those wavy white lines is a layer of sedimentary rock being exposed. Most date back 200-300million years but at one spot some pre-Cambrian granite was exposed, over a billion years old. The whole way up there were markers pointing out the names and ages of the rock formations.

Umm, I want to say I saw lots of Bighorn Moose, but I'm sure someone will tell me these are Elk. I saw maybe 50 or so on the way, but the other 48 were at a much greater distance down in a valley with a meandering stream.

Right before heading down the other other side. Sadly, the pics of Bighorn Canyon, named by the Lewis and Clark Expedition, are washed out in haze.

Tomorrow I hit the Museums here in Cody, maybe the Buffalo Bill Dam, and then off to the Tetons...Stay tuned...

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