Last night as I took a scenic country drive I wondered why this area was so different. It’s a transition from the rolling plains for sure but a mighty fast transition. Locally, this area is called the Adel Mountains but technically, it is a volcanic field.
My research shows that about 75 million years ago magma pushed up along cracks, pushed walls apart, squirted magma in different directions – sounds pretty scary to me but look at the beautiful scenery that was created!
This crazy volcanic activity created the nearby buttes (Square
Butte, Crown Butte, Shaw Butte) and because of the way the magma was shooting all over the place we have some unique looking geography. Many visitors to the area ask about the flat-topped buttes. They are different looking, sort of like someone sliced the top peak off, and easily visible from different directions.
Lewis and Clark and the Corps of Discovery traveled upstream on the Missouri River through this area in July 1805. I can only imagine what they thought as they pulled their boat against the current for many miles on rolling plains, and then saw these volcanic peaks that they would be climbing.
I marveled at the magnificent scenery as I cruised along in my car, stopping only for some beautiful photos. Most of he wildflowers were still blooming, I saw only two vehicles in 30 miles and the sun was slowly sinking in the west. I didn’t want it to end but I was able to capture memories of the beautiful and unique landscape on my camera.
My advice – take the road less traveled, slow down and enjoy the ride.