Monday, January 15, 2024

South Dakota


We left Jackson and headed for South Dakota. First we left Shane and Janette at the Jackson Hole Airport then went back to Oxbow Bend to see if we could get a better picture of it.

We had to travel through part of Yellowstone, which we had seen before. The only difference was that the fauna had moved around.

We found the Beartooth Highway, an elevated road which had lots of hype, but was not as nice as sights we would see shortly. We were still in Wyoming. We spent the night at the end of the highway.

The next morning we went on the Big Horn Scenic Highway which was not only picturesque but also gave us geologic information.

Onward to the Bighorn Dolomites which though inspiring were not on the scale of the Dolomites of Italy.

Our last stop of the day was at Devil’s Tower.

The next morning we got on the Spearfish Scenic Highway and stopped at Kissing Rocks and Spearfish Falls.

We also saw a Dances With Wolves Film Site and Roughlock Falls

We then went to Custer State Park and started with the Wildlife Loop. We had our closest encounter with Pronghorns, fed wild burros with apples and carrots (we were given permission) got close up to Bison and Deer. The next day was to be the bison roundup and we saw cowboys out getting things in order.

We drove up to a lookout at 12,815 feet.

We then went on the Needles Highway with its rock formations and then went to the Eye of the Needle.


The next morning started with Mount Rushmore. We walked the Presidential Trail and stopped at one of the buildings for a sculpting lecture.

We made it back in time to see a Native American Hoop Dance performed.

We then drove to the Chief Crazy Horse Memorial. It is not yet finished and won’t be for at least another 30 years but was worth a visit. We took the bus to the base for a closer look. The museum was informative.

We then went to the Jewel Cave for a guided tour.

That evening we drove to eat dinner in an old mining town.

The next morning we were into the Badlands.

We stopped at Sage Creek Basin Overlook and we took a hike into it.

We then drove to Robert’s Prarie Dog Town.

Next was Badlands Wilderness Outlook.

Then Sheep Mountain Overlook.

We ate our picnic lunch at Conata Basin Overlook.

Then to the Yellow Mounds.

The Hay Butte Overlook followed that, then the Homestead Overlook and the Burn Basin Overlook.

That ended our day but we drove back later to see the sunset from an overlook.  


The next morning we went to the outlook near the Ranger station, then hiked the Notch Trail, Castle Trail, Door Trail and Window Trail. 

For our last day we went into Rapid City. We went to a very good archaeological museum, took a tour of the town visiting all the statues of presidents and saw a movie.