Last weekend was a rare summer weekend that was open on our calendar and so we packed the bags and tent and headed to Medora for a camping overnight and adventure. This marked the first time my girls have ever camped and they were bursting with excitement. On Saturday morning, the first word that either of them said was "camping."
We made a reservation at the Medora campground and had a site near the Little Missouri River with a view of the buttes of Theodore Roosevelt National Park. Here we made a little lunch (there is a partial burn ban in place) before heading into the town of Medora for some shopping. A pair of cowboy boots and a cap-gun later we were in swimsuits and heading to the City pool. At just $3.00 per person for the day this heated pool was a great place to be on a 90-degree day. From the pool we also ventured to the new Family Fun Center. $8.00 per person equals two-days of unlimited use of the inflatable water slide, rock climbing wall and bungee-jump-trampoline. I lost track of the number of items we went down the slide. My daughters are 4 and 5 1/2 and they had no problems making the stairs and no fears heading down the slide. But I will say that my children have a bit of fearlessness in them. Case in point, the rock climbing wall. The website doesn't say exactly how tall this wall is but in my perspective as their mom - my daughter was hanging 1,900 feet off the ground. The staff were friendly and thorough and safety was never a question for me. Both girls said that their favorite activity though was the trampoline bungee-jump.
Saturday evening was perfectly picturesque - which also describes what a lot of people were doing following the famous Pitchfork Steak Fondue. If you haven't yet experienced a pitchfork steak fondue, it's literally hundreds of ribeye steaks, speared on pitchforks and fondued! (I should have warned the cook that I was going to take his picture.)
And what can I say about the Medora Musical?! It is one of the best shows I've seen performed at the stunning Burning Hills Amphitheater. The new cast had perfect harmonies, the music was a great blend of modern country, gospel, patriotism and classic themes, the script was fresh and the fiddler is awesome.
Camping was a success. There was a rain shower that went through and yes, it was a little warm and stuffy. Plus, the sunrise was at 5:30 a.m. and I think my daughters were up shortly after that! But nothing can compare to seeing them wake in that golden light and look out on the Badlands with such joy.
Sunday morning we took a drive through the South Unit of Theodore Roosevelt National Park where we were very soon greeted by buffalo who had taken over a prairie dog town. Just another mile into the park, more buffalo greeted us - including a pair who walked right along our pickup. We took a hike along the Wind Canyon Trail - which was great for the ages of my daughters. It has a great view of the Little Missouri.
And finally, off into the distance, we saw a herd of wild horses that made my youngest daughter smile like this. It was an excellent weekend and even though we go to Medora almost annually there are always new things to try and new experiences to share. (This year we didn't pack the golf clubs for Bully Pulpit, which my hubby only mentioned once or twice.) If you have favorite vacation stories and pictures, please share them with us on our Facebook page!