Fort Collins to Devils Tower: Planning Your Trip to the Wyoming Wonder
Just under 350 miles to the northeast of Fort Collins lies the mysterious rock, also knows as 'Bear's Lodge.' If you're looking for a road trip, one to America's very first national monument is a 'should do.'
Anyone who grew up in the '70s or '80s is familiar with Devils Tower in Wyoming because of the movie 'Close Encounters of the Third Kind' from 1977. In that movie, aliens used the tower as a point of reference to have everyone meet. The wonderous rock formation does call out to you, as it did to Richard Dreyfuss' character in the movie.
Are Reservations Needed for Devils Tower National Monument Park?
Not at this time.
Driving to Devils Tower National Monument out of Fort Collins, you'll (most likely) be taking I-25 to Cheyenne; once you get to Cheyenne, you have options:
Driving Option 1: Continue on I-25 North (344 miles)
If you've never seen Glendo Reservoir in Cheyenne, you'll love passing by it on this route; it's enormous. Plus you get to pass through Chugwater, Wyoming, which just sounds cool.
Once you get to Douglas, you'll get onto Wyoming Highway 59 and take that into Gillette, where you can stop down for a bite. Suggestion: The Railyard.
After a break in Gillette, you'll get onto I-90 headed east, for about 50 miles, where you'll see the exit for the monument, You'll pass by Keyhole Reservoir, which is also a state park; if you have time, you could do a little fishing.
Driving Option 2: Taking Highway 85 (336 miles)
Out of Cheyenne, you'll get onto Wyoming Highway 85 North. This route will take you into Black Hills Forest area, coming close to the South Dakota border; it's very beautiful. After about three hours on 85, you'll head north on Wyoming Highway 585, which will connect you with I-90, briefly, before you exit for the monument.
What's the Cost to Enter the Park?
It varies depending upon your mode of transportation, but standard cars cost $25 for a 1-7 day pass, good for all occupants of the vehicle.
Can You Bring Pets?
Yes, though they are not allowed on hiking trails or in park buildings.
What Do People Do at Devils Tower?
Climbing is a very big part of the park, but hiking and picnicking are also very popular.
What About Lodging in the Area?
Like any tourist area, there are many places to choose from around Devils Tower, but one that really stands out, is the Devils Tower Lodge. It just seems that if you're going to drive all they way up there, why not stay at a place that 'rings' of the experience? They have many dining/cocktails options and rooms seem reasonably priced, too.
I once took one of my nephews to Mount Rushmore; we'd planned to stop at Devils Tower on our way back, but the weather turned on us, so we opted out. I still regret not going.
Will you be checking out Devils Tower?