We got up and left Devil's Tower pretty early, and headed east. We left Wyoming and entered South Dakota, and drove through Rapid City. We stopped at the Ellsworth AFB Air and Space Museum for a few hours on the way, that was cool.
|Minuteman missile in the center.|
|B1A (Carter cancelled it, Reagan made it the B1B)|
|B52 - thankfully never delivered nuclear warheads...|
After the museum, we kept driving about mid-afternoon we arrived in a field in Buffalo Gap National Grassland, on the east side of 240, south of Wall, right outside of Badlands National Park. The really cool part about this spot (besides it's free, and right outside the National Park) is that it's right on the edge of a huge cliff, looking out over some of the Badlands. It's really cool!
It was HOT when we got there! We put out the awning and spent most of the afternoon in the shade. The grass was pretty dry, we were careful to make sure we didn't do anything that might start a fire.
We stayed in the same place on our three week test trip last summer. Last year, there were a bunch of cows grazing here, but we didn't see any this time around. It was a whole lot drier too. (Alice got a tick last time too, but we didn't see any here this time -- maybe it's too dry?)
It cooled down a lot after the sun started to go down a bit. We had dinner outside, and I took a walk along the edge and took some pictures.
We got up even earlier the next morning and hit the road really early, because it was supposed to be really hot. We drove east through the National Park, and stopped at a bunch of overlooks, some of which we remembered from last time.
As the morning went on, we pulled over, had second breakfast, and climbed around a bit. It was really fun, but it started to get really hot, so we kept moving.
We headed north, and pulled over at an overlook/trailhead for lunch. We all did the really short Window Trail, and my dad and I did the 1.5 mile Notch Trail. The Notch Trail was pretty cool, we walked through a canyon for a bit, then climbed a log ladder/stairs and walked along up higher to the Notch, which looks out over the park.
It was still pretty early in the afternoon, so instead of stopping just outside the park, we kept heading east!