Filed under : Editors Choice

Seniors Enjoy National Monument

Devils Tower

Senior citizens have all seen photos of this iconic scene with it’s huge unnatural setting, but let’s learn a little more about Devils Tower and it’s geological formation. Learning about a natural phenomena like the Tower is always helpful prior to a visit. The Black Hills in South Dakota was a good example for my family and me years back. It’s an awesome site as well.

This geologic feature protrudes out of the rolling prairie that surrounds the Black Hills. The site is considered Sacred to the Lakota and other tribes that have a connection to the area. Hundreds of parallel cracks make it one of the finest traditional rock climbing areas in North America.

Devils Tower entices senior travelers to explore and define our place in the natural and cultural world. So is Devils Tower an old volcano? No. Many geologists agree that Devils Tower is an igneous intrusion, with magma that has welled up into the surrounding sedimentary rock. There it cooled and hardened. The sedimentary rock has since eroded away to show the tower. Actually there’s debate as to it’s origins.

I happen to think that this monumental ignaeous intrusion was a great landing site for the movie “Close Encounters.”  Remember that scene?

Are You a Senior Climber?

Devils Tower National Monument is located, 33 miles northeast of Moorcroft, Wyoming. It’s a National Monument and remains open 24 hours a day, and normally 365 days per year. This is subject to change due to inclement weather which may cause delays opening the roads or even complete closure because of the most severe weather, and Wyoming at times can get pretty nasty.

Can you climb the Tower?  You sure can…if you are able and adventurous. Most seniors pass by on that one.  One guy free-soled without ropes to the summit in only 18 minutes. Must have some monkey characteristics, that guy. In recent years, about 1% of the Monument’s 400,000 annual visitors climb Devils Tower, mostly using traditional climbing techniques. Here’s the FAQs link to answer some of those questions you may be thinking about.

Go to Google, input Devils Tower and it will fill in additional facts and interesting information that I have not included. Enjoy your visit. jeb



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