Colorado Traveling Ducks Visit FDR Memorial

We really liked the Franklin Delano Roosevelt Memorial, so we want to dedicate an entire blog post to showing you what we found there.   Most memorials dedicated to a person consist of one structure.   But not this one.   Let’s go.

Franklin Delano Roosevelt Memorial

Franklin Delano Roosevelt Memorial

This is a famous statement made by President Franklin Roosevelt, or FDR as he was known.   The Only Thing We Have to Fear is Fear Itself.

Fear

Fear

That sounds right to these Colorado Traveling Ducks.   We love water, waterfalls and fountains, so this was a great view for us.

Pretty waterfall

Pretty waterfall

FDR is sitting in his chair.

President Franklin Delano Roosevelt in his wheel chair

President Franklin Delano Roosevelt in his wheel chair

When he was 39 years old, in 1921, he contracted polio, losing the use of his legs.   Franklin D. Roosevelt was President of the United States during the Great Depression and also during World War II.   In the days before television, he talked to the American people on the radio.   This man is listening to one of his “fireside chats.”

Listening to FDR's Fireside Chat

Listening to FDR’s Fireside Chat

This sign shows President Roosevelt’s definition of progress for the American people.

He said...

He said…

This statue illustrates his philosophy.

Progress?

Progress?

During the Great Depression many Americans were out of work and could not feed themselves or their families.

In line for Soup Kitchen

In line for Soup Kitchen

These people are in line for a meal at what was called a “soup kitchen.”  Here is another favorite fountain at this memorial.

Another waterfall

Another waterfall

FDR was very fond of his dog, Fala, so here is Fala with President Franklin Roosevelt.   Many people wonder if President Franklin Roosevelt was related to President Theodore Roosevelt.   They were related, but just barely.   They were 5th cousins.   FDR was a popular president and guided our country through two very difficult times in our history.   FDR was president during the Great Depression, and also during World War II.   He was also the only president to run for office 4 times and to be elected 4 times.   He was President of the United States from 1933-1945.   After he died in office, our laws were changed to only allow a president to have two terms.   After President Franklin D Roosevelt’s death, April 12,1945, Eleanor pushed for the US to join the United Nations.  Eleanor Roosevelt, the widow of President Franklin Roosevelt, became the first United States delegate to the United Nations.

Eleanor Roosevelt

Eleanor Roosevelt

She also served as the first chairperson of the UN Commission on Human Rights.   This is a great memorial with many areas and a gift shop with a small museum in the center of the memorial.   We want to end today with another favorite fountain.

We still love water

We still love water

We hope you visit the Franklin Delano Roosevelt Memorial when you are in Washington DC.   It is on the Tidal Basin.  We think you will like it.

President’s Day 2016

We, the Colorado Traveling Ducks, wish you all a very Happy President’s Day.

Mount Rushmore honors our democracy

Mount Rushmore honors our democracy

Mount Rushmore has heads of four presidents, George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, Theodore Roosevelt and Abraham Lincoln.

This holiday was originally created in 1885 to recognize the birthday of  President George Washington on February 22.   In 1971 the holiday, under the Uniform Monday Holiday Act, was changed to the third Monday in February and now honors all presidents.

Theodore Roosevelt National Park with Zeb and Soapy Smith Duck

We love National Parks!   We are in western North Dakota on I-94.   Theodore Roosevelt National Park is here.

Welcome to Theodore Roosevelt National Park in western North Dakota

Welcome to Theodore Roosevelt National Park in western North Dakota

First we stop at the Painted Canyon Overlook.   This is part of the North Dakota Badlands.

Pink in the Painted Canyon

Pink in the Painted Canyon

The pink shows why this is called a painted canyon.   This place takes your breath away.

Painted Canyon has many moods

Painted Canyon has many moods

Don’t you just love it?   Next we went to the Visitor’s Center, received our map, and drove through the South Unit of Theodore Roosevelt National Park.   First stop is the Little Missouri River Bottomlands.

Little Missouri River

Little Missouri River

Very pretty.   The sign said these are Cottonwood trees, dark green jumpers and dwarf sagebrush.

Overlooking Little Missouri River

Overlooking Little Missouri River

We ducks, like humans, enjoy seeing this beautiful, tranquil scenery.   There are thousands of prairie dogs at various areas of the park.

Prairie dogs. Talking about us?

Prairie dogs.   Talking about us?

They are so cute.   We do not want them in our yards, but we love to see them in parks.   Oh no!   This could be trouble.

Could this be trouble?

Could this be trouble?

The coyote is walking among the prairie dogs.   We hope it is not time for him to eat.

Coyote says to relax

Coyote says to relax

Looks like he is saying, “I told you I was not hungry”   Some of the road are paved, and some are not.

Quiet road in park

Quiet road in park

We are fortunate that there is very little traffic in the park now.   This area is known as Beef Corral Bottom.

Beef Corral Bottom

Beef Corral Bottom.   Today we see prairie dogs, not cattle here

Years ago during the free range cattle round up, the cattle were brought here.   Then the owners could check the brand and take their cattle home to prepare for sale.   These buffalo are lounging by the side of the road.

Enjoying the sunny day.

Enjoying the sunny day.

We did not get out of our car here.   No reason to be foolish.   This is the home of the buffalo, not the home of tourists.   The color of the rock varies here.   Whitish in some areas.

Lighter rocks

Lighter rocks

Darker rock is other areas.

Darker rocks

Darker rocks

We like the open lands also.   The minerals in the soil effect the color of rocks.   This lone buffalo stood on a hill surveying his land.

Buffalo watching us admire him

Buffalo watching us admire him

He was so still at first, we were not sure if he was real, but he did begin to turn his head and walk away.   Behind the Visitor’s Center, is the Maltese Cross Ranch House.

Maltese Cross Ranch House. Theodore Roosevelt lived here summer of 1884

Maltese Cross Ranch House. Theodore Roosevelt lived here summer of 1884

In September, 1883 Theodore Roosevelt part an interest in the Maltese Cross Ranch.   He loved the Badlands of North and South Dakota.   The following winter his wife and his mother died with hours of each other.   When the weather permitted, here came back to North Dakota and lived in the Maltese Cross Ranch House.    Here he was able to find peace and renewed strength of spirit and body.   This ranch house was later moved to its present location in the National Park.   We hope you also have beautiful sunny weather when you visit Theodore Roosevelt National Park.

The Buckhorn Exchange

So much history occurred at Denver’s Buckhorn Exchange.  We go there for excellent exotic food and old time atmosphere.  This famous steakhouse opened for business in 1893.  And it is still serving fabulous food to Denverites, visiting dignitaries and tourists.  I, Zeb the Duck, my Alaska cousin, my Alaska Uncle and my mom went here for dinner.  We all liked it.

The Buckhorn Exchange in Denver

The Buckhorn Exchange in Denver

The Buckhorn Exchange was opened and operated by Henry H. Zietz.  Zietz, one of the most colorful figures of the Early West met Buffalo Bill Cody and became a member of the scouts.

Buffalo Bill Cody was a frequent visitor

Buffalo Bill Cody was a frequent visitor

Through Buffalo Bill, Zietz met Chief Sitting Bull who dubbed him “Shorty Scout”.  The name stuck with Zietz, and he and Sitting Bull became life long friends.

President Theodore Roosevelt ate here and hired Shorty Scout to be his hunting guide.  Other presidents and dignitaries also ate here.  In June 1938 about 30 Indians in full battle regalia rode war ponies down Osage Street to the Buckhorn.   Shorty Scout appeared and Sitting Bull’s nephew, Chief Red Cloud, presented Shorty Scout with the sword, taken by Chief Sitting Bull, from the body of General George Custer at the Battle of Little Bighorn in 1876.  The Zietz family owns the rare sword to this day.

When you visit the Buckhorn Exchange you can keep your souvenir menu, which is newspaper about the Buckhorn Exchange.  Our humans love the paper.  The restaurant walls display a wonderful collection of mounted game and fowl.

The walls have wonderful displays

The walls have wonderful displays

You will also enjoy viewing their fabulous gun collection.

Our humans each ordered the combination plate.  They had a buffalo tenderloin and elk with a mixed berry chardonnay sauce.  They each had a baked potato and mixed vegetables.

Elk at top of plate,then  baked potato, with buffalo closest to my human.  Yum!

Elk at top of plate,then baked potato, with buffalo closest to my human. Yum!

The meat was so tender.  Everything was very tasty.

Our table had a candle and we liked the candle container.

Love this candle

Love this candle

This, like the entire décor, is very rustic and feels Early West.

The white oak bar, made in Germany in1857 is on the second floor of the restaurant.  Framed behind the bar is Colorado Liquor License No. 1.  This is real history.

We are sure you will enjoy visiting and dining at the Buckhorn Exchange.

Enjoy it all

Enjoy it all

Elk

Elk

Take time to experience the history here.  For more information visit www.buckhornexchange.com   The restaurant and lounge is located at 1000 Osage Street in Denver, Colorado.

Devils Tower Wyoming

Northeast Wyoming is home to the nations first national monument.  In 1906 President Theodore Roosevelt proclaimed Devils Tower the first national monument.

Devils Tower, Wyoming

Devils Tower, Wyoming

In 1872 Yellowstone had become the country’s first national park.  Some of Wyoming’s incredible landscape was saved for all to enjoy.

About 50 million years ago, molten lava was forced into sedimentary rocks and devils tower and the little Missouri Buttes were begun.  The geology is fascinating, but today, I just want to show you what I saw and experienced.

Getting to Devils Tower, we crossed the Belle Fourche River several times.  It is a beautiful river.  You would enjoy looking at it, camping by it, hiking along it, and fishing in it.   As we approached Devils Tower, the landscape changed.

Approaching Devils Tower

Approaching Devils Tower

We were back in the Black Hills.  Just love the hills, Ponderosa pines and unusual rock formations.  The landscape is always changing.

We pulled off the road at the designated place and took pictures of Devils Tower.

Devils Tower

Devils Tower

It is just there.  Sticking up out of the ground.  The tower is 867 feet high and stands 1,267 feet above the river.  The diameter of the base is 1,000 feet.  This is one big rock, or as they say, one big columnar monolith.  Again, these places make me feel so small and humble.

Mom and I walked around the base of Devils Tower.  On one side, we could see the green plains.  This was once buffalo country, but now it is cattle country.  The valley is green, with trees and hills in the background.

Cattle country behind Devils Tower

Cattle country behind Devils Tower

Very relaxing.  I like being here.

We took lots of pictures of Devils Tower and were fascinated by this rock formation.  Circling above the tower were turkey vultures.  The vultures use the rising warm air to circle, play and look for food.

Turkey vultures around Devils Tower

Turkey vultures around Devils Tower

They were fun to watch.

Shortly after entering the park grounds, we saw the black tailed prairie dogs.  While there are still many black tailed prairie dogs, their overall population is about 2% of what Lewis and Clark described as “infinite” 200 years ago.  Much of their natural habitat has been lost.  They were cute,

Black tail prairie dog. Looks so cute

Black tail prairie dog.
Looks so cute

but they jumped a little and barked.  I stayed in the car while mom took photos.  The park information said they could bite.  The car was safer for me.  I like being safe.

They really have black tails

They really have black tails

We went to the visitor’s center.  Lots of good stuff in there.  Mom just bought the hatpins.  She buys those almost every place we go.  No food or drinks are sold in the park.  There is a water fountain, but that is all.  Keeps things cleaner, and I think that humans sometimes eat too much.  We had drinks in the car, if we got thirsty.  The visitor’s center is a log building.

Visitor's Center at Devils Tower

Visitor’s Center at Devils Tower

Just seems to fit in the Black Hills.  The roads, camping and picnicking facilities and museum (now visitor’s center) were built by the Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC) during the Great Depression.  We saw more of their work in Colorado at Red Rocks Amphitheater.

I hope you visit Devils Tower.  It is in northeastern Wyoming, 33 miles northeast of Moorcroft, Wyoming.  I think it is very interesting and very peaceful.  I know you would enjoy your visit to Devils Tower.

One more photo of Devils Tower

One more photo of Devils Tower

I hope we can come back again.   Tomorrow I will tell you the legend of Devils Tower.  Be sure to read it and let me know what you think.

Our national park system is great.  Visit www.nps.gov for more information.