Boulder, CO --- Estes Park, CO --- Wyoming --- Keystone, SD Today we left Boulder and headed north up into Wyoming. Before we left Colorado, we stopped in Estes park. Absolutely beautiful place. I feel like I’m going to be saying that a lot but it is so true…You’ll probably agree after seeing the pictures even though that doesn't do the place justice. A random landmark in this town is The Stanley Hotel, which is where The Shining was filmed. We didn’t go inside but I was creeped out just looking at it.
Corey and I didn’t have a specific trail we wanted to hike. Actually, it was pretty difficult to find a trail in the first place. We kind of just drove around, followed some signs and ended up in this parking lot outside of a trail where you could choose a few different paths. We chose the trial named “Twin Owls.”
Saying “trail” is a bit of a stretch because we didn’t exactly stick to the path. Once we realized the trail was headed down a hill and not up, we decided we should just make our own path and explore. I must say, I was nervous at first. It was pretty rocky and I’ve only hiked in Connecticut before. Not exactly a place where expert hikers are made. I knew Corey wouldn’t do anything too dangerous so I just followed him and we headed up a giant rock.
Going off the path was worth it. It was a tough climb up but once we made it the view was breathtaking. And, we figured out what the Twin Owls were! Two stones that look like two owls perched on the top of another giant rock. We didn’t realize until we got to the top that those rocks were the entire purpose of the trail, so I guess we weren’t too off. After leaving the park we ventured into Wyoming. We drove through the Black Hills which looked like another world to me. There was one quite peculiar scene we had to stop at. In a random town, I have no idea where we were, there was this bike sculpture. Hundreds of bikes just staked up making a bike jungle gym looking thing. It was really cool but super eerie.
When I was doing research for the road trip, I found there was a town we were going to drive through that had "population 1." I was so skeptical that a town as such could exist. But, after driving through Wyoming for a little...It's definitely possible.
AND for everyones information they are now overpopulated and have a population of 4. So...
Right before night fall we made it to Keystone and went straight to see Mount Rushmore... naturally. I’ve never been specifically interested to go see Mount Rushmore in the past, but now that I have I’m glad I can check it off the bucket list…Well, put it on the bucket list and then check it off..I guess…that counts…
For some reason I feel like I will go there again, which is super random but Corey and I both felt that way which I thought was funny.
We happened to get there about an hour before the “lighting ceremony” so we waited around for it. We were two of the first people there but soon enough a lot of people showed up. I felt like we were waiting forever as songs like Yankee Doodle and America the Beautiful played in the background...So patriotic.
After much anticipation, spotlights hit the rocks and honestly, it wasn't even that cool...lol...They looked way better in the daylight. I was hoping for some elaborate lighting and fireworks or something. But clearly my expectations were way too high.
We also found out that there is a secret room behind Lincon’s head. It’s not open to the public but naturally after we heard that, all Corey and I wanted to do was go find the room. Apparently it’s impossible, which isn't surprising because I bet a lot of people try to get in.
After this long first day of traveling, we were ready to get to bed. Tomorrow? Driving straight across South Dakota.