Tuesday, July 13, 2010


Anyone who has seen Close Encounters may recognize this place despite my somewhat weak attempt at the repeated musical phrase. Its name might be another matter.

It has two names really; Devils Tower (minus apostrophe) and Bears Lodge. One of the rangers who gave a talk at the monument shared that the difference between the two names had to do with the omission of a consonant. There is some discussion about what name will be used for the formation in the future. We'll see what happens.

In any case, I loved camping by the monument. I love the mass, the color, and the unique aspects of the formation. It is one of the few parks we've visited where there are multiple theories regarding its origin. All I know is that it is a powerful place filled with beauty and that the space offers a chance for spiritual renewal.

It was our nation's first declared National Monument in 1906. There was talk about naming our arroyo a National Monument, too.

Don't know whether the arroyo didn't become a monument because of distance from Washington, D.C, because there was some political reason, or because something more imminent pushed it off the "to do" list. In any case, whatever their offical designation, they are both Wonders of the West and should be preserved as such for as long, as possible.


  1. I recognized it immediately (from the film)! I'd love to get there someday.

  2. If you get a chance, do. It was beautiful. James and I sort of camped at the KOA Kabins just outside the park.