Monday, July 9, 2012

Day 23 - TRNP - North Unit, Walford City, ND

We had a leisurely morning.  We weren’t sure what we were going to do.  There is a 2 hour scenic drive through the South Unit - where we were - and we thought we might do that drive and then stay one more night there but ultimately we decided to pack up after we did the drive and then go to the North Unit near Walford City, ND.  
The park campground doesn’t have electric hookups and allows campers to run their generators.  To be fair, we ran ours for 10 minutes to brew my coffee but one of our neighbors ran their generator all day and well past the 8pm cut-off time.  We hoped it would be quieter at the northern unit.  
The drive was beautiful -- we saw some lovely scenery, wild horse (near our campsite!) and buffalo in the distance.  
Wild Horse in our campground.  Bison roam there too but I'm kind of glad we saw the horses!

It's not as dangerous as it looks but she likes to climb to the top!  Future Peak Bagger?

Father and son exploring . . . 

The Bad Lands of North Dakota's Theodore Roosevelt National Park

Another wild horse at TRNP - South Unit

Then we headed north.  

North Dakota is experiencing an oil boom and it is changing the nature of the state.  There are definitely good changes and not so good ones.  It’s fascinating to drive along this lovely ranch land and see an oil well working away.  More troubling are the huge gas burn-offs lighting up the sky, visible for miles.  We drove north seeing more and more signs of the changing nature of North Dakota. 

What the frac?
We definitely made the right call on going to the North Unit though -- it was quieter and prettier than the busier South Unit (which is right on Highway 94).  We enjoyed their loop drive.  Ruth and I went into Walford City to by groceries and we settled in for a quiet night of playing cards.  Cribbage is our family game of choice and this time, the girls won.  Unlike when the boys win, we did not get a stuff skunk and “spray” it at the losers!  

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