Capitol Rock. Image by Steve Hobe
July 3, 2020
Continuing the Carter County Museum‘s summer programming series, there will be a combination of a geology hike and a star party at Capitol Rock on Friday, July 3. The hike, led by CCM paleontology intern Elliott Armour Smith, will begin at 8 p.m. and the star party, led by CCM Museum Educator Steve Hobe, will follow at 9 p.m. The evening’s events will end by 10:30 p.m. The entire event is free and open to the public.
The hike portion will be an interpretive tour of the rock formations at Capitol Rock. The 28 million year old Arikaree Formation overlays the 60 million year old Fort Union Formation in an unconformity, meaning there is a gap in time between them. The hike will be on unstable gumbo with a bit of up and down. Hiking boots are strongly recommended. Capitol Rock is a large open area, perfect for social distancing.
The star party will consist of telescope viewing, night-time activities and an interpretive constellation presentation led by the CCM’s museum educator Steve Hobe. Cleaning wipes and stations will be present and used for all activities.
The roadways into the Custer Gallatin National Forest are mostly gravel and on rough terrain. Be prepared for large changes in elevation and rough roads. Four wheel drive is recommended.
From MT 323, exit East on Tie Creek Rd. and drive 19 miles until you reach the South Dakota border. Then, turn left onto SD-20 E toward Forest Rd. and make a sharp left onto Forest Rd. and continue for about 3 miles until you reach Capitol Rock.