Wyoming and South Dakota: From rocky mountains to black hills

Teton National Park through which we drove on our way to Black Hills was stunning although it has not deserved as much attention as Yellowstone. There were lots of relatively short and tempting hiking trails around the area. The mountains ruled the scenery.

Throughout our travels in different places and countries, we had developed a tradition of swimming (or dipping ourselves) in different lakes, creeks and oceans – so far our check list in the US included the Pacific Ocean, Crater Lake, Ceour d’alene lake, Yellowstone lake – and now we added to the list swimming in the String lake surrounded by the mountains, Grand Teton, Middle and South Tetons, Mount Moran and others.

On our way to Balck Hills we made two stops. The first night we stayed at a lovely little cowboy town, Dubois. The next stop we made at a tiny little town called Lusk, with a population of 1500, where we stayed for a couple of nights to rest. The Covered Wagon Motel, the other one of the two Inn’s in the town, had everything we needed for relaxing: an inside pool and a hot tub, a grill, a playground, and a basketball court. An interesting detail was the Tesla charging station, which none of the cowboys, construction workers and random poeple staying at the Inn used.

To our surprise, there was a very interesting museum in Lusk, the Coachwagon museum. It entailed the local history ranging from dinosaurs to old mailboxes and local schools, from barbed wire models to wooden wagons. One of its famous possessions, we learned, was a two headed baby cow.

Old issues of LIFE magazine were for sale and I found an issue on USA national parks. One dollar couldn’t capture the value it represented to us, making our way by traveling across the country and exploring its national parks and other sites.

A highlight of our stay in Lusk was our son’s birthday. We organized a pool party, with an ice cream cake, and Finnish Moomin candies and cookies I had saved for the occasion. When my son was blowing the four candles on the cake and making his wish, I felt so proud of this little guy who had traveled half way through America, as well as of the other, still little guy, wanting to be a big boy, for being such a great big brother.

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