Museums & Memorials

July 6, 2012

We leave 10 Sleep early in the morning and drive for most of the day.  The ride is mostly grasslands and forested areas and the dead trees and branches from a recent fire remind me of “pick-up-stix” the way they are strewn about the area.

Arriving in South Dakota, our first stop is the Custer County Courthouse and Museum.  We browse through the many rooms where books and treasures are kept.   The courthouse still has the original furniture and jail house!  Built in 1881 it served Custer County for 92  years and has been a museum since 1976.  Next stop; Crazy Horse Memorial.  Sculptor Korezak Ziolkowski accepted the invitation to carve Crazy Horse into the mountains of the Black hills.   It is so impressive when I look up at this colossal memorial, especially since I never knew of ts existence.  There is a museum on the premises, but Dick & I only watch a film, visit a few rooms and scurry off to our next destination; Mt. Rushmore.  It s now 4:30 pm, and the day has taken on a gray and overcast look.  Actually, when I first set eyes on the monument it has a surreal feeling about it as it’ s now shrouded in mist,  not at all like some of the photos I’ve seen.  I am in awe at this granite on a mountain peak of America’s four leaders who brought the nation from colonial times into the 1900’s.  After taking dozens of photographs, we walk around the museum, watch a short film on the history of Mt. Rushmore and depart just in time, as it begins to rain.  I am ecstatic, that I finally am finally able to see this massive sculpture and not disappointed in the least. Gutzon Borglum was the master sculptor of Stone Mountain and he was responsible for this amazing masterpiece in stone.

We spend the night in an RV campground in Rapid City.

July 7

This morning our journey takes us to the Badlands.  It  is a cool day and although it begins to rain, our spirits are not dampened.  There is a visitor center at the entrance where we view many exhibits, in particular the fossil cleaning area.  Dick has visited this National Park before (in 1951) and does not take in the magnificence as much as I.  There are many view points, several trailheads  and scenic overlooks that lure you on.  The peaks, gulleys and buttes of the wide prairies of the Badlands are a place of extremes and the colors are changing with every turn.  It reminds me of a “mini Grand Canyon.”  For me, the most exciting part of the drive,  is when Dick spots a bighorn sheep just below the road.  I jump out of the car, and am able to capture this magnificent creature.  (Photo to follow in a future blog.)

Next stop; Sturgis, the Harley Davidson capitol of the world!  Every August, the town is filled with “bikers” from all over the country.  Unfortunately we arrive too late to tour the museum, but browse the Harley Davidson store and walk around this fascinating town.  Situated up on a hillside there is an RV campground and that is where Dick &  spend the night.

The only incident today- we almost run out of gas (again) on our way to the Badlands!

I hope all of you are happy, healthy and enjoying life.

Love, Joyce


2 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Dianne Elliott
    Jul 08, 2012 @ 05:34:48

    Did you enjoy Mt. Rushmore more than Crazy Horse? I haven’t seen that yet, but hope to one day in the future. I’m hoping you don’t get stranded because of Dick’s not filling the tank when it reaches 1/4 full. You sound so happy with everything, I love reading your excitement. Continue to enjoy!


  2. ricky
    Jul 16, 2012 @ 03:24:25

    again D & I love reading your blog. Btw, the shirts from Sturgis arrived. Tell Richard the xl fits fine, but the xxl IS a lot roomier. So he was right….again. Rb


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