Yesterday we drove 537 miles. That’s a lot of Black Angus steak walking around! In other words we saw a lotta cows.
Today we traveled only 355 miles but made some really interesting stops.
The weather was much kinder to us today. Blue skies all day!
After our “continental breakfast” at the Howard Johnson’s we headed off. Our first stop was Wall, South Dakota. We felt like we had to go to Wall Drug because, as we’ve been told, “Everybody goes there.” Not to mention that there was a billboard every 50 feet on the highway telling you something about Wall Drug. So we went. Cross that off the bucket list! Definitely touristy but I guess you got to see it. The place was huge. Basically a whole collection of little shops where you can buy souvenirs you don’t need. We did not stay long enough to get the free ice and five cent coffee. It would be a cool place to take kids though!
Our next stop was Badlands National Park. Yes, outside. I guess after this summer, my mantra of “I don’t go outside.” will have to change. That ship has sailed. Don’t worry though, I’ll be back on my couch within a couple weeks!!
The weather was perfect today for driving from overlook to overlook and checking out the gorgeous views. It’s really amazing to think about how the land in this country was formed. The layers of sediment were so obvious on the formations. Really beautiful.
Kind of a combination of what we saw a few years ago driving through Bryce (looking down into the canyons) and Zion national parks (driving through the canyons.) But we didn’t see any rattlesnakes 🤣
Our next stop was Deadwood, South Dakota. We arrive there just as the reenactment of a Old West shootout was ending. Too bad we missed that. It was an enjoyable walk up and down their Wild West Street. We checked out the place where Wild Bill Hickok was shot and the place where his assassin was caught. It would be a fun place for kids but it wasn’t a place we spent a long time at.
We drove through Sturgis, the site of the annual motorcycle rally. Luckily, it wasn’t Bike Week but basically that means there is nothing to do in Sturgis. But now we can say we’ve been there.
We then drove to Rapid City, South Dakota where we had booked a room at the Rushmore Hotel in downtown. We really liked Rapid City! The hotel was great and the people were friendly.
I was fascinated by the large paper sculpture hanging in the hotel lobby. It is called “Prairie Edge Hunt” and was created by Patty and Allen Eckman. The sculpture shows five mounted Lakota braves driving a herd of buffalo over a cliff as women and children wait below to begin the work of butchering meat for the coming season. The photo doesn’t do it justice. Here’s a link if you want to learn more:
Apparently Rapid City is the most patriotic city in America! As evidence of this – on every single corner of the downtown area there are statues of former presidents. At least through George Bush, Jr. Also our room was decorated in red white and blue!
The plan for tomorrow is to visit Mt. Rushmore, Crazy Horse, and Devils Tower.