Thursday, September 6, 2012

Yellowstone Road Trip - Day 08

"Travel for the young is part of education, for the old, a part of experience." ~Francis Bacon.

After the two old buzzards had their La Quinta Sunnyside Breakfast (same song, second verse) they motated outta Dodge City at 7:27 on Highway 50 right onto Highway 283 going North. They turned left onto 96 at Ness City and found a Pot o' Gold. It is a unique giant slot machine on someone's private property. You can find it in today's photo gallery. The old buzzards hereby grant permission for you to print and frame it for posterity. You can bet that you will never see another one! We also found a convenient Wendy's to our "relief". When necessary, you can always find a room of necessity in Ness City!

Wilma and her GPS did NOT want us to turn left onto 96 out of Ness City. She sternly kept telling us to “Make a U-turn if possible!” By the time we got onto 83 going north she recalculated and helped us find Monument Rocks National Natural Landmark. Seeing it required driving 14 miles round trip on a dirt road. But, it was well worth it. We were driving on a very flat area when we suddenly came upon the towering formations. John's first comment was “Stonehenge!” They are actually chalk pyramids from what was once the floor of a vast inland sea. This site is the first natural landmark chosen by the US Dept. of the Interior as a National Natural Landmark. This landmark is on private land but the owners are generous to share this site with the public. The limestone formations, originally formed 80 million years ago, stretch to 70 feet in height. Sadly, the Pyramid Ranch, upon which the Monument Rocks reside, is on the auction block. Don't know what will happen in the future. See the link in the next paragraph and check it out.

So far, it is very pristine. It would be a terrible shame if it was vandalized. It is just seemingly out in the middle of nowhere and there is no one around for miles and miles except for a few tourists at times. It has also been designated as one of the 8 Wonders of Kansas. Click here for more information about the Monument Rocks.

There are lots of photos of Monument Rocks in today's gallery, and you can get an idea of the rocks and the 7-mile long dirt road  you get to drive to reach them on the following video.

While we were still on 96 we stopped by the side of the road and got to see a monument to George Washington Carver. He had a homestead in the area for several years while he was a very young man. It was a sod house. He left to continue his education and was later in his life that he conducted so much on peanuts and sweet potatoes, among other things.

On Hwy 83 we saw a historical marker about El Cuartelojo Pueblo Ruins. This is the furthest north that there are any records of the Pueblo Indians having made a settlement. They came to Kansas in the 1600s to get away from the poor treatment they were receiving from Spanish soldiers in Taos (now in New Mexico instead of Mexico).

Another spotting on Hwy 83 was a huge bronze statue of Buffalo Bill in the process of shooting a buffalo.

All of this and more in today's photo gallery of 32 images. You can view them by clicking here.

After lunch at a nice city park in Rexford, Kansas, Linda took the wheel and drove until we got to our America's Best Value Inn in North Platte, Nebraska.

Since we are in North Platte, we thought we would have some Mongolian food at Kings Mongolian Buffet. We will let you know later if there was anything memorable about it. LATER: We had our Mongolian Buffet. They had lots of seafood, especially shrimp (boiled, bacon wrapped and grilled, fried). Bubba would have loved the place. Lots of fruits, good hot & sour soup and soft ice cream for dessert.

Happy trails!

1 comment:

  1. I had to veer off from the trip on Day 3 and am now catching up. Had a few moments earlier today so I ran out to your place. Cousin Jerry was just coming back from a grocery run. We chatted a spell on your swing. He's such a hoot!

    I really could have used your Pot o' Gold last week when we were in Lost Wages ;-) Nevada. Our trip was great except for that flash flood we got stuck in trying to get home. Our planned trip through the Mojave was out of the question from that point forward. Can you imagine being in the desert during a flash flood on roads such as the one you drove on to see the chalk rocks? Yeah, we couldn't either so maybe we'll do it in the Spring.

    I snagged several photos of the non-rectal "World's Largest Thermometer" for you on the way home. Can't wait to see you again, but I don't want the trip to end either. I'm enjoying the chauffeured ride. Pass the fly swatter please.