Devils Tower National Monument
Prepare to be awed: the laccolithic butte made up of igneous rocks known as Devils Tower is a jaw-dropping geological feature that rises 867 feet above Wyoming’s rolling prairies.
While America’s first national monument garnered significant attention as the backdrop to the 1977 Stephen Spielberg movie, Close Encounters of the Third Kind, the tower is sacred to Northern Plains Indian tribes and the Black Hills region Kiowa Tribe. With oral storytelling and a history that dates back thousands of years, today, American Indian tribes continue to hold sacred ceremonies at the tower, including sweat lodges and sun dances. There is more to this monument than its rich history. You can stop at the visitor’s center to learn about one of the ranger-led programs, night sky viewing, hiking and even climbing to the top of Devils Tower. If one day isn’t enough to explore this unforgettable area, bring your camping gear to stay within the monument, or stay just outside or in accommodations at one of the nearby towns.