South Dakota was one of my favorite states this time around, and ever actually.  There is so much to it.

Our first night, we went to Deadwood, South Dakota…Not Deadwood, but Deadwood…you gotta say it in an Wild Western Accent.  So Deadwood is a Wild West town, where there are still casinos, pubs, and shootouts in the middle of the street.  Okay, well the shootouts were staged, but they sounded real.  Me and Vic snagged our Junior Deputy badges as we sat on the curb and watched the shootout unfold in front of us.

Also in Deadwood, we, for the first time, took one of those Old Timey photos.  It was quite the experience.  I really liked what I was wearing, and I would totally dress like that if it was the norm to wear a cowboy hat whenever I damn feel like wearing one!

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YEEEEHAWWWW!

The next day, was MOUNT RUSHMORE Day, baby!  It. Was. Awesome!!!!!  As we drove closer to the monument, and the trees thinned out, we looked up, and there the 4 Powerful Presidents were!  Washington, Jefferson, Teddy Roosevelt, and Lincoln looked into the distance, stone faced and quite detailed.

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We parked, and walked up the stairs.  Right in front of us, there they were!  Below were the 50 state flags in a row leading to the grand viewing deck.  We did a little walking loop to see these guys from different angles, watched one of those informative movies, walked around the museum, and soaked in as much Mt. Rushmore knowledge we could! There was talk of carving Western Heroes into these unique mountains in the Badlands, but Borglum, the head carver, insisted that presidents should be carved into the Mountain. That’s what they did.

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50 State Flags greet visitors as they enter the Monument.

George Washington, represented the birth of the U.S. Jefferson represented the growth.   Abraham Lincoln represented the preservation of the United States, (despite the Civil War).  Roosevelt represented the development of the nation.

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The faces are 60 feet tall and it took 14 years to complete the carving.

Enough facts…did you know that there is another mountain carving in the area…A Carving of Indian Chief Crazy Horse.  It has been in the works for around 60 years, and it is way far from being complete.  Mainly because the sculptor never wanted to accept money from the government, (because it is a sculpture honoring a Native American, and frankly, if you can recall history, the white folks weren’t quite nice to the Native Americans.)

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60 years in the making…

It was a nice setup they had too.  But I don’t know, it seems like a huge project…moving at the speed of molasses.  I guess we have to wait and see when it is finished!

We then went through Custer State Park.  Some of the views felt like we were in a picture!  The rocks in the Black Hills were so unique, and the Needles Highway was a windy road on the edge of cliffs, (mom’s favorite), with tunnels which were just holes in mountains.

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Sylvan Lake.
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Needles Highway.
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Eagles Eye.

It was a nice scenic drive until we got to a point where the Emergency Broadcast System went off…

“Attention, this is a warning that there is severe weather in your area.  There is currently a Hail, Thunderstorm, and TORNADO watch in your area.”

Uhhhhh.  We pulled over.  Luckily there were no tornadoes in our immediate area, but the hail was coming down!  We drove the nature loop where we were surrounded by the burros…

Oh the burros.  The storm must have riled them up because right next to our car this happened…

CmxoDU9UsAEflASThey say a picture is worth 1000 words, but I have no words for this picture.  I had to sensor it.  THIS IS NOT THAT KIND OF WEBSITE.

We finished the loop, ate din-din, and headed back to Mt. Rushmore for the lighting ceremony.  Before lighting up the monument, they call down all veterans and those active in the military.  I was VERY proud of our country.  The National Anthem played and all I wanted to do was start a USA! Chant!

Amazing!

(The next day was dedicated to North Dakota, there isn’t anything there but it still deserves a little post, right?)

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