We awoke early (when the light is best for photos) and took the Notch Trail up into the hills. The trail was a bit rough and hard to follow, and it had its scary moments - like the 65-rung ladder we had to climb at one point. But the view at the top was certainly worth it!
After descending the Notch Trail and celebrating our feat, we hiked two shorter (and lower) trails. Then we drove out the western end of the park, passing scores of prairie dogs, who popped their heads up and squeaked at us as we passed, as well as dozens of free-roaming bison, who ignored us.
We’re now in Rapid City SD, and we’re preparing to spend the next three nights at the Game Lodge Campground in Custer State Park, in the heart of the Black Hills.