Wow, Day Four of our road trip was certainly… something. It was a day of mixed reviews, if you will!
Even though we spent a good portion of this day driving, we still managed to squeeze in quite a bit of adventure. We crossed state lines, went on a gorgeous hike, and even had a run in with the law (not proud of this one!). All the ups and downs of the day were centered around our goal to get to Devil’s Canyon Overlook in the Bighorn Canyon National Recreation Area. And get there we did! What’s a road trip without a few hiccups?
Devil’s Canyon Overlook
Truth be told, I was originally attracted to Devil’s Canyon Overlook because I had seen incredible pictures of the spot online. These pictures showcased the gorgeous canyon from the view of a cave opening. Spectacular. I noticed that getting to the Overlook was supposed to be very easy — no hiking — and I knew we had to go!
But when we arrived, I couldn’t for the life of me figure out how to get to that cave view. We drove into the Bighorn Canyon Recreation Area without a problem, and found our way to the Overlook using GPS (the signal is spotty, so maybe consider bringing a paper map). We pulled in to the parking area, which was pretty standard. Railing along the cliff’s edge prevented people from getting too close. I knew from the photos where the cave should be, and we were all fairly certain that we could see that very cave a ways off, but we had no way of getting to it (save for rappelling down, which we couldn’t do with a six year old…). If anyone knows the way, please share! The mystery has been killing me ever since.
In sum, the view is amazing and there are no obstacles to see it. We went on a Friday afternoon and only ran into one other group of people, so the crowd was next to nothing too! I would recommend it even though I didn’t get the exact view I was hoping for.
Sullivan Knob Trail
After taking an excessive number of photos at the Overlook, we drove around a bit and came upon the Sullivan Knob Trail. When we saw that the trail was only a mile long, we figured we might as well give it a go.
Holy smokes, this trail did not disappoint! First of all, it was incredibly easy. The only problem we had during this hike was a brief moment when we strayed off trail, but we easily found our way back and headed in the proper direction. There was virtually no incline to give us any trouble. Best of all, it was a short walk to an amazing view!
Personally, I enjoyed the end of this trail much more than I did Devil’s Canyon Overlook. It was not as blocked off as the Overlook was, which gave us (and by us, I mean me) the opportunity to climb further down to check everything out and get an even better view than from above. Additionally, the trail featured a lot more redrock than the Overlook. As an Arizona girl, I appreciate those desertscapes — almost felt like hiking back home!
This stop was not planned. We were leaving the Sullivan Knob Trail when Fabian spotted a turn out with lake access, and he could not resist. We didn’t stay long, so I don’t have much to report on this area, but I can tell you three things: 1. The views were lovely, 2. The water was cold, and 3. There were a lot of ants.
Alrighty, here it is. I promised you a law enforcement story and you’re getting one!
During this trip, Fabian, Skyler, and I drove from Billings, MT all the merry way to Devil’s Canyon Overlook. This required us to go down through Wyoming and eventually back up into the Recreation Area in Montana. That wonderful path took us through the tiny town of Deaver, Wyoming, which is where we had an unfortunate encounter with Highway Patrol.
Long story short, we were speeding. Fabian received a hefty ticket, which made him grumpy for the rest of the day (the only reason why didn’t stay in the Rec Area longer to explore…). We ended up paying the ticket on our way back through Deaver after our visit to the lake. The people were friendly enough, but be warned! The speed limit drops from 70-75 m.p.h. to 40-45 m.p.h as you approach this town. Don’t miss that detail or you could get stuck with an incredibly unwanted vacation expense like we did.
All in all, I had a great time at Bighorn Canyon! Skyler had a great time at Bighorn Canyon! Fabian? Not so much. Don’t forget to comment below with any questions or stories, and stay tuned for Day Five! 🙂
Safety disclaimer: When hiking, always be aware of the wildlife that could be present on a trail, and take the necessary precautions. Just because I haven’t seen it yet doesn’t mean it isn’t there, or that you won’t see it! Additionally, make sure to follow all safety protocols as outlined by the recreation departments in charge of each site you choose to visit. Be safe and prepared.
Medical disclaimer: As always, consult a physician before you and/or your child begin an exercise regimen or engage in rigorous outdoor activity. The general information above is not meant to replace the advice of a medical professional. If you experience any problems or have concerns when engaging in physical activity, stop and contact a doctor before proceeding with additional workouts.