Day 8 – Theodore Roosevelt NP

I woke up this morning when my alarm went off at 6:30. We enjoyed our normal morning of coffee in the room.  I ordered sandwiches from Jimmy Johns, but we couldn’t pick them up until 10:30.  We left the hotel around 10:15 and picked up the sandwiches at Jimmy Johns right as they opened.

We drove to the Painted Canyon Visitor Center which was about 20 mile from our hotel.  The Visitor Center was open and I got my National Park Passport stamped.  We went outside behind the visitor center and looked at the Painted Canyon.  We only stayed a few minutes before getting back to the car and driving down the interstate to the South Unit.

Sign outside Painted Canyon Visitors Center
Painted Canyon

I was surprised that this was basically a drive through the park.  It was a nice drive and there are a few trails you can hike but it is mostly a 26 mile drive through the park.
We did the drive all the way to the end, noting places we wanted to stop on the way back.  We turned around at the end and made our noted stops.  Our final stop was at the Cottonwood picnic area where we ate our Jimmy Johns sandwiches in the lovely shade of a grove of Cottonwood trees.

Picnic under the Cottonwoods

Feeling like we had thoroughly seen the South Unit we decided to drive the 62 miles to visit the North Unit.

The North Unit was a shorted drive, 24 miles, but the same drive though.  It was really pretty with many wild flower areas in bloom.  We even saw some big horn sheep grazing and a few bison.

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After exploring the North Unit we drove back to the hotel.  We had snacks in the room and played Uno.  Shari and I discussed tomorrow’s drive to Glacier National Park.  Originally, I planned to break up the drive over two days, but Shari wants to go the whole way tomorrow.

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