As we made our way from Pittsburgh to Colorado, we made a point to stop in St. Louis to see the Gateway Arch. Like so many before us, the Arch ushered us into the West as we continued our journey.
We were staying a short distance from St. Louis, so we planned a quick trip into the city with the sole purpose of seeing the Arch and then running a few errands on our way back to the campground. Knowing how crazy National Parks get, especially on the weekends, we awoke early on a Sunday morning to try to get to town before it got too crazy (and before it got too hot).
We succeeded in getting to the Arch early, with very few people milling around on the grass below. We had ample time to enjoy the views and play with the girls.
Even though Will and I had both visited the Arch growing up, aside from the Arch, nothing around it was the same. Therefore, I had no idea that to get to the gift shop we would have to go through security, ride escalators way underground, and that acquiring our simple postcard, sticker, and token would be an adventure in and of itself.
However, once you start down some paths, there is no turning back, so Bird had her first experience walking through a metal detector and being completely overwhelmed that she had to do it by herself. It was great.
Aside from the unforeseen length of our shopping excursion, we made quick time of our trip into the city. The Midwest was experiencing an unprecedented heat wave for mid-May, and we were all (most of all Daisy) ready to get back to the truck.
There is something about the Arch and its symbolism of journeys and adventures that I absolutely love. And even though we did not take a ride to the top this time, it is certainly a place I hope to bring Bird back to when she is older (and less afraid of metal detectors).