After a full afternoon and evening of driving around the park and the monument Nan and I had several choices of directions and destinations for the Wednesday day tripping.... We decided on Sturgis, SD. The summer rally was over and the crowds had gone home but there is still only one Sturgis. I had read about it before and Nan has close family members that made a ritual of riding in for Bike Week. There were also all those beautiful Black Hills and woods to drive through to get there.
We spent the most time in the museum. I kept thinking back to that last episode of MASH and BJ driving off on his Indian Motorcycle....
I think Stuart would look good riding in this one with "doggles" on.
The early explorers of travel. That date at the bottom is 1916.
Plus costs less than regular...it has the ethanol added. What I really wanted to capture was the combination of attractions here.....Casino, Laundromat, Wildlife Display. Isn't that a combination to drive out of your way for?
Walking around downtown Custer after we got back from the road trip.
This is what sunset looks like in Custer when you have already walked down the main drag and are taking the back street home.
And this is what dessert looks like when you take the waitresses suggestions.
The explanation for the following picture goes back to "Rock" the owner of the camp ground where we stayed in Custer. He is a rock hound and goes up into the hills and hunts through some of the old mines to finds need stones a sampleof which he had on the table out under his building. The back of his pick up truck was also about 1/3 full of rose quartz. This on top of the "gravel" that he had delivered that was full of rose and white quartz and mica..... I couldn't walk out with the dogs but find myself having to bend over and pick up "just one more piece!" I told him that I needed to leave before my rig became over the weight limit with rocks.....he just suggested that I distribute the weight carefully on both sides....
I would love to have gone up and search through the hills and mines where they were finding the rarer stuff. Maybe next time.
This area of South Dakota definitely needs more days to explore but both Nan and I need to be heading off if we want to stop by Pat's house....and you already know we did that.....
Crazy Horse looking at the morning sun as we headed out of the area. You can just see an area of dust from the excavations equipment around the front.
Nan and I saw this sign the day before but this time I got a picture of the advertisement. Sorry, but all I could think of is "Whose ass is red?" I mean, I don't really know the effects of Rhubarb Wine...do you?
With no more time to ponder that great puzzle, we drove on towards the Badlands. Apparently the Badlands were not the only area that was considered "unfit for civilizations" as you can see from the second map.
But I can see that if you were being chased up on the prairie, you might lose the tail once you dropped down into the canyons.
Are you hot enough? The sky looks innocent but it was 107 degrees out. We, Alaska travelers, were not adjusting to the environment shock to our systems. We ran with the house AC turned on so that when we did stop even for a few minutes the rigs did not start to heat up for us or the dogs.
Driving on towards Pat's we passed this neat museum. For $11 dollars you could walk out and see inside all the buildings. Remember that part about it being 107 degree? Guess what? For free you could stay inside the visitor's center and take pictures. From talking with Carol I think Liz may have gone inside the buildings when they came through a couple of years ago. So if you are really interested, go ask Liz. After see all the small cabins and trapper cabins in Alaska....I thought that I could use my imagination for the size and economy of possessions. As you might guess the buildings were not all built at once. The sod house on the left was built first and then added onto with the building on the right.
Heading farther east across South Dakota the land got flatter and drier. I will say that folks in South Dakota (and later I noticed it in Iowa) have a lot of sense. All along the highway right-a-ways there were large round bales demonstrating that every blade of grass available was going to to used. When I asked Pat, she said that she thought that whose ever field it is that runs along the road can bale the right-a-way that runs next to their fields. She said that for $300. or more for the large round bales no one was going to leave that grass on the ground if they could help it especially when so little has grown well this summer.
These guys were standing on a slight rise in the hills along side the highway trying to catch any moving air that they could.....
Nan left Pat's house Friday morning and headed south through Nebraska towards Florida. I hung around another day catching up on my banking and messages and headed out on Saturday morning. I think Nan and I are both making good time towards reaching our destinations.....sigh....but the sunset over the Farm and Fleet parking lot next to Walmart in Cedar Falls, IA, just isn't the same as some of those we watched earlier this summer....
I should be home by Tuesday after a stop over in Columbus, Ohio, to see a friend.