May 27, 2004

Rawlins to Custer

Bison close up

Another sucky start to the day. At 6:09 I stuck my head up to check the time. Dad saw me and decided it was time to get up and start rustling around. So I got six hours sleep last night. yay.

We didn't do anything this morning except drive - north to Casper, then east across the border into South Dakota. There was a brief stop off at a natural bridge in Douglas, Wyoming. Apparently it's the only natural bridge with a stream flowing under it in the USA. I also tried to get some photos of Pronged Antelope around Casper, but didn't succeed.

Once in South Dakota we headed north through the Wind Cave National Park. We didn't really know what was there, and when we stopped off at the visitors centre, they said we could join a tour of the caves that was just about to start. Apparently there's 111 miles of caves in the system. The tour explores just half a mile! The caves aren't spectacularly beautiful, but they do have an unusual formation called "boxwork" - which is formed when minerals seep into limestone and solidify harder than the original stone. Then when the stone is eaten away by water, the harder seams are left behind, leaving quite cool looking criss-crosses of stone.

After the caves it was getting quite late, so we continued to drive north, stopping here and there to photograph all the wildlife - bison, mule deer and prairie dogs. We also saw elk, rabbits, a coyote and a turkey!

When we got to Custer it was 7pm, so we decided to call it a night and not go onto Rapid City. We stopped for dinner at a place called "Wrangler" (I think) and had bison! It tasted like meat :) Actually Mum and I shared it - and glad we did, the serving was huge, and we were both full. Dad couldn't finish his dinner. Oh well.

Went across the road and checked into a cheap motel. No phone though :( Next time the parents want a cheap motel I'm going to insist on a phone line. Custer doesn't have local maglobe internet access, and there's no mobile access either. Another night disconnected from the world. Still, it'll let me get an early night.

Posted by kazza at May 27, 2004 11:57 AM

I'm sorry you were that close to a buffalo. Good gawd those things give me the creeps.

Posted by: JC on May 28, 2004 06:28 AM

hehehe they weren't that bad! You were there in July though when they had calves, and apparently are a lot more aggressive :)

Posted by: kazza on May 28, 2004 03:03 PM