Blogs from South Dakota, United States, North America

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North America » United States » South Dakota July 13th 2014

Our first stop in South Dakota was the Badlands, which were beautiful! For miles all we could see were jagged peaks and deep ravines...and it just got better and better the further we drove into the park. The next day we went to a wildlife preserve and saw big horned sheep, mountain goats, arctic and timber wolves, Rocky Mountain elk, reindeer, pronghorns, mountain lions, and black and grizzly bears. After we drove thought the main park we saw 8 bear cubs which were crazy rambunctious, and absolutely adorable! Then we went to Sitting Bull Crystal Caverns, and crawled around 300 feet below ground, surrounded by Dog Tooth Spar crystals. That night we went to Mount Rushmore, where we watched a video in the outdoor amphitheater about how each of the four presidents shaped our country into ... read more


We started planning our new adventure. We needed to get our driver's licenses renewed in South Dakota. Drive through Nebraska and Kansas during tornado season? Or, go through the Rocky Mountains where the high elevations would challenge Tom's lung disease? We headed out from Arizona towards the Rockies. We first stopped in Meteor City, Arizona to see the largest meteor crater in North America, elevation 4,000'. Tom's portable oxygen weighed 15 pounds and we found out in that visit it wasn't a good travel companion...too heavy. Oh well, we got to see the meteor. On to Los Lunas, NM where our friend Nancy said we could find an ancient ruin of the 10 Commandments. We found Los Lunas but we were not equipped to hike the 2 miles back to the Stone, dated to about 1000 ... read more
Desert Bloom_1
Beautiful Pronghorn
Donkey Mom and Baby


Saturday, 28 June, 2014 As we drove north from Douglas to Gillette, we spotted a lot of pronghorns. I don't know whether they are more plentiful up here (I believe they are) or if we are getting better at spotting them (that, too.) The beautiful green rolling hills of eastern Wyoming prairie spread as far as the eye can see. There are long trains here, too, but instead of being loaded with containerized freight, they are filled with coal from the mines around Gillette. We passed a few of the mines today. All morning the sky was full of puffy white clouds, which grew darker and denser as the day wore on. At Gillette, we turned east onto I-90 for a few miles before turning north to Devil's Tower National Monument. Sean seemed impressed by the ... read more
Devil's Tower National Monument
Kids have to climb on rocks
Devil's Tower


We have now spent three days in this beautiful state .It is interesting that its nickname highlights the monument to the four presidents, when, in fact, for me, the other attractions are more memorable. The Black Hills of South Dakota are filled with sights to see and things to do. We were able to see the major tourist spots but, again, to see everything worthwhile, it takes more than a couple of days. Bill and I decided to stay in Deadwood, which is just a few miles from most of the attractions such as Spearfish Canyon, the Presidents Monument and Crazy Horse. Unfortunately, the weather the first day was not great and our trip to see Mount Rushmore was hampered by the fog. We were unable to see the mountain clearly. However, we made the most ... read more
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Model of Crazy Horse

North America » United States » South Dakota » Pierre May 11th 2014

Greetings to one and all from Gettysburg, South Dakota. Since arriving in Gettysburg in the middle of a snow storm at 8.30pm on the 3rd of April, my feet have hardly touched the ground. I started work the following day at 6.00am and it has been like that every day since then. The farm is not one single block of land. It is in fact large tracts of land spread out over the Central and Western parts of South Dakota. One block is more than 100 miles away from the workshop, the center from where all activities are based. Just recently, myself and 2 others (Herman and Peter) drove to and from Dupree, (100+ miles away) 4 times apiece much of it in the rain. That made for a long day (18 hours) as we were ... read more
Every Road has a turning (somewhere)
Monster Tractor
The cab of the Tractor

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On the road again! Sept. 4ththrough Sept. 22. We have been planning a road to South Dakota, Montana and Wyoming for several months. It's a well-known fact that you have to leave a country before seeing some of its finest sights. And we are no different. The first destination is San Francisco, for the America's Cup and an opportunity to see Team New Zealand in action against Oracle. We're spending five nights with friends, Bob and Dale, in Orinda. Team NZ starts the series well and is 8-1 up, but we all know the final outcome: it's a win to Oracle..... Now, how did that happen? San Francisco is one of the world's beautiful cities and always a pleasure to visit. It's four days of seeing sights and dining with friends. A French Bistro at the ... read more
Wild Bill
At Caroline's Cousin's Dude Ranch
Caroline and John

North America » United States » South Dakota » Sturgis August 17th 2013

We were fortunate to be able to be part of the 73rd Black Hills Classic Motorcycle Rally in Sturgis, South Dakota, in August this year. Bones (Raewyn) and I flew out to San Francisco and were picked up at the airport, by long time HOG friends, Pete and Suzette, in their Jaguar, where they fed and bedded us for two nights, with a full day of Harley Davidson and BMW Dealers to visit, also fitting in lunch and the Butterfly Gardens (sorta like pay back for dragging the girls to motorcycle shops). We capped off the day with a walk up their local mountain for 'Happy Hour' as the sun set, along with amazing views over San Francisco and the bay, followed by a most succulent BBQ steak, cooked to perfection by Pete. The next morning ... read more
Pete and Suzette
Amazing Plants
Like a Jungle


While driving thru 8 states there have been several shapes and sizes of "clumped" grass. Jess and I have discovered that we both have an issue with the phrase "bales of hay". Today saw us rising bleary eyed and before the sun in Bismarck, ND. After my freshly made waffle, we set out to see Salem Sue, the worlds largest heifer statue. Not only did we get a photo opp with Sue, we also got a panoramic view of New Salem, ND with sunflower fields, windmills, and rolling hills. The 2nd stop of the today was the Enchanted Highway in Regent, ND. The highway stretched 32 miles with 6 different scrap metal statues ranging from geese (currently worlds largest scrap metal statue) to grasshoppers. The favorite has to be fishermans dream. Everyone, get your fist pump ... read more
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North America » United States » South Dakota » Sturgis August 10th 2013

This was the last day in Sturgis. Went to Full Throttle Saloon last night to see The Jackyl , this place is Wild at night. Does anyone know that woman that photo bombed the nice photo that Len & I where trying to take? We road Iron Mt Road and Needles Hwy today. We had a wicked thunder storm in Hill and the new Gary waited it out. Have had a Great time with Len & JoAnn the last few days. A few more Road side attractions to see on the way home. Looking forward to sleeping in our own bed :)... read more
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North America » United States » South Dakota » Deadwood August 9th 2013

They came from near and far for the Atkins reunion. Roberta from Green Valley, AZ; Judy from San Luis Obispo, CA; Linda from Northville, SD; Susan and Kevin from Sausalito, CA; Mike from Sioux Falls, SD; Annette and Tom from London, UK; Tom and Leila and granddaughter Aleila from Sioux Falls, SD; Mary and Bob from Sioux Falls, SD; Betsy and Tim from Minneapolis, MN; Teresa and Matt from Des Moines, IA; Steve and daughter Ellie from New Plymouth, New Zealand. Our sister Peggy was there in spirit from heaven. After lots of searching, we found just the right place for the reunion: the Black Hills of South Dakota. We rented three houses with four bedrooms each. The Gilded Mountain Residences were just the right size for our daily get togethers and our nightly dinners. Each ... read more
MOM & DAD
TOM & LEILA with ALEILA at RUSHMORE
CRAZY HORSE




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