Heading West — Theodore Roosevelt National Park; June 8-11, 2017

South Unit

On the first leg of our passage west, Barb and I spent two days camping in the Cottonwood Campground of The Theodore Roosevelt National Park.  On the second day we joined a ranger-led hike to a little-known formation called Eye of the Needle.  That evening we drove up to the Wind Canyon Overlook to watch the sunset.  Alas, a cloud bank arrived from the west just before we did.  We hung around long enough to catch a photo of the full moon rising from the opposite direction, however.  (No captions needed on the photos.)

North Unit

We then drove the 80 miles up to the North Unit, for our first experience in that portion of the park.  We were impressed.  True, that portion of the park is considerably more remote; no quick trips into a store for an ice-cream cone.  No drinking fountain in the minimal trailer-hosted visitor center.  But a gorgeous wooded campground down in a flat valley, where we found a site right next to the river.  The hills surrounding the valley feature quite dramatic badland formations.  We hiked one trail that took us up onto a ridge with spectacular views on both sides.  We also observed cannonball concretions, large spherical concretions which resemble cannonballs. They were created by early cementation of sand and silt by calcite.  

We will be back, ice-cream or no ice-cream.  

(Again, with the exception of the photo of the cannonballs, no captions are necessary.)

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