Sunday, July 18, 2010

Travels With The Shepps - Part 1

I'll be the first to admit that travel through the central part of Nebraska, along Interstate 80 is dull. It is flat, flat, flat. Hence the reason it was the path that the pioneers chose when they traveled across the territory 160 years ago. So we were no less excited when we first started seeing giant rock formations jutting out of the land in western Nebraska, particularly Chimney Rock.

Since our trip was a working vacation for The Big Guy, the kids and I took advantage of a stop in Scottsbluff to actually go to the top of Scottsbluff where, as you can see, the view is amazing. I think Mini-Me and Miss H might have stayed up there for several hours. It was so quiet and incredible.

Next stop on the tour was Fort Robinson, near Chadron. Fort Robinson was an active military post from 1874 to 1948. It started as an Indian Agency protective post, was the last great gathering place of the Sioux Nation and served as a prisoner of war camp during World War II.

Our final stop before arriving in Custer, South Dakota was an unscheduled one. The Big Guy got pulled over for speeding in a national park. While we were waiting for the very nice officer to discover that my husband was not a wanted felon, we noticed these prairie dogs grooming each other. I wonder how often the officer has seen someone he's pulled over snapping pictures?

The evening saw us heading into Custer State Park and started with a stop at Sylvan Lake. It's not a big lake but is truly beautiful. So beautiful that there was a bride out on some of the rocks having pictures taken.

We followed The Needles highway on through the park. The Big Guy and Mini-me spent a lot of time perched on outcroppings trying to get the perfect shot of the needle rock formations in the park. We couldn't believe how long it took us to work our way back down the highway. We were beginning to think we might just be driving around and around in circles. It was not just a little ironic that when we were finally able to pick up a radio station again, the song that was playing was The Beatles' "Long And Winding Road!"


  1. Great pictures!! Thanks for the tour.. I love it!

  2. sounds like an awesome trip.

    I went across country on a greyhound bus once!

    OMG! it was truly amazing to see the different places.

    What happened with you and the Beatles song is what I call the overlapping of life!

  3. Great post Lisa! Looks like a nice trip aside from the speeding ticket.

    I love the rock formations. I'm a sucker for pictures of rocks though- I find them so incredibly beautiful. We have a Sylvan Lake here too but it sure isn't as gorgeous as that one.

    Have a great Sunday!

  4. Oooh, I'll be there in three weeks when we head out to Strugis for bike week! Last year when we went we only drove through Nebraska for about an hour but it was a gorgeous part of our 23 hour drive! It helped, too, that it was breaking dawn and I loved how the sun came up over the rolling farm land (we were on the very eastern part of the state). Custer State Park is gorgeous, huh? I'm looking forward to going back there!

  5. I loved all of those photos...Nebraska is a state that I would love to visit. Those prairie dogs are the cutest things ever!!!

  6. I do love a road trip! I love even the flat lands if I haven't seen it over and over before. I always imagine what it might be like to live in all the places we see along the way.

    Thank you for sharing such beautiful photos with us, Lisa.

  7. Sounds like a great road trip!!! Beautiful photos :)

  8. My goal is to someday drive across the US...I've been on both coasts, but I keep missing the middle of the country. Thanks for sharing your pics!

  9. Interesting photos Lisa. I loved that you could get them bigger with one click on them! Those rock formations are amazing, especially the Chimney Rock, as well as those by the lake. Glad you has such a good time.

  10. I'm so sorry I flaked on finding a time to see you! As it turned out I would have certainly been alone with the boys anyway, which is not a good start to any get together (When they out-number me, that is!)

    Isn't Sylvan Lake pretty? There are always so many people there in the summer.

  11. Nice pictures of many places I've actually seen in real life too. The Needles is pretty amazing. Man, I miss those days of road trips. It's been awhile.

  12. Love the pics.

    We had to take an different exit out of Yosemite (one that we've never traveled on before) since our plans changed so suddenly and at one point, I thought..."Man, California is a huge state!" There was nothing but dirt for miles and miles.

    My kids were antsy as was I. I get carsick so I passed out at one point from a Dramamine stupor but when I woke, it was still DIRT with no civilization to be seen.