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Standing Rock.

Standing Rock

Field review by the editors.

Nome, North Dakota

The rutted gravel track and overgrown path -- prairie grass up to the armpits -- leading to the Standing Rock Hill Historic Site reveals a monument that is infrequently visited. No official at nearby Fort Ransom State Park (where the Rock is supposed to be, but isn't) knew how to get to it ("We've never had anyone ask us before") but old George Peterson who lived around the corner from the post office did.

Standing Rock is a lumpy, cracked granite cone about three feet tall, jutting out of the ground at the crest of a hill, anchored in concrete. Next to it is a 1954 U.S. Geodetic Survey marker; the surveyors may have been the last to visit. There is also a plaque: "The Inyan Bosendata of the Dakota Indians used this site as a place for ceremonials and offerings. The state geographic board has designated this place as one of the most sightly and historic in North Dakota." The rock frame that encloses this metal sign is much larger and more visually interesting than Standing Rock.

Update: Albert M. Prestrude, whose father Alfred deeded the site to the state, wrote to us: "Standing Rock is on top of the farthest west Indian burial mound in the United States. It has never been excavated, it offers a panoramic view of the prairie topography and the Sheyenne River valley to the west."

Standing Rock

Prestrude Evergreen Farm

Unnamed Rd, Nome, ND
On the property of Prestrude Evergreen Farm. From Nome, drive south on Hwy 32 to Hwy 46. Turn right (west) and drive about five miles, then turn left on an unnamed road and follow the tree line south a half-mile to the end. The rock is on top of the mound.
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Nearby Offbeat Places

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In the region:
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