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Devils Tower National Monument - A Guide for Visitors


By Angela Brown
Northwest US Travel Expert, about.com
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Devil's Tower National Monument is among Wyoming's coolest attractions and is part of many an American road trip. Featured in movies such as "Close Encounters of the Third Kind" and "Paul", Devils Tower is a unique and strange geological wonder.


Where is Devils Tower National Monument?
The monument is located in the northeast corner of Wyoming, off of State Highway 24 by the Belle Fourche River. The closest towns where you can find visitor services are Gillette, Sundance, Hulett, and Moorcroft, with Gillette being the largest option with the greatest variety of services.


What is Devils Tower?[post_ads_2]
America's first officially-designated national monument, Devils Tower is an intriguing rocky presence in the northeast Wyoming landscape that can be seen from miles around. Geologists aren't entirely sure how it was formed, but surmise it is a small laccolith, an intrusion of igneous rock injected between two layers of sedimentary rock to create a dome-like form.

Given its strange and unique appearance, it is no surprise that Devils Tower holds spiritual and mythological significance to the Native American tribes of the region.


The Visitors Center at Devils Tower National Monument
Located just outside monument boundaries on the east side, the official Devils Tower National Monument Visitor Center has interpretive exhibits, a bookstore, and a gift shop.


Hiking at Devils Tower National Monument
Hiking is a popular and wonderful way to experience Devils Tower. There are over seven miles of trail within the monument. The Tower Trail, which loops 1.3 miles around the base of the tower, is paved.
There are also several of miles of unpaved trail that take you through meadows and Ponderosa pine forest.


Climbing Devils Tower[post_ads_2]
Many people take one look up at Devils Tower and think "I must climb it!" Thousands of people actually do so each year. According to About.com's Climbing Expert, the vast majority of climbers choose the grade 5.6 Durance Route. For safety reasons, all climbers must register before and immediately after they climb; this registration must be done each day of climbing.

While not prohibited, climbers are asked not to climb the tower during the month of June, a time when many sacred Native American ceremonies take place.


Other Fun Things to See & Do at Devils Tower National Monument
  • observe the goings-on at a prairie dog town
  • check out the Circle of Sacred Smoke sculpture
  • enjoy a picnic in view of the tower
  • during winter, go cross-country skiing

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Travel Magazine: Devils Tower National Monument - A Guide for Visitors
Devils Tower National Monument - A Guide for Visitors
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