Devils Tower

July 2018

It’s a short drive from Rapid City SD to Devils Tower Wy I chose to get off the interstate on rt 34 which becomes rt 24 in Wyoming very scenic and one short 8% grade.

If you wish to buy a town Aladdin WY is for sale it consists of a General Store and a population of 15. Wikipedia says it sold at auction in 2017, but I noticed the for sale sign is still up.

I decided to spend the Fourth of July at Devils Tower National Monument. 

The Belle Fourche River campground is at the base of the monument next to the Prarie Dog town.  The sites are level with a picnic table and fire ring no hookups, with my senior pass it was only $10 per night. If you must have hookups there is a KOA right next to the entrance.

I grabbed a site next to the creek with a prairie dog town view.

 

I love to walk, but I haven’t done a lot of Hiking in years, so I decided not to take Matilde up to the visitor center but to hike the 1.6-mile trail from the campground. Uphill but gradual and hoot to come back down.  You start off from the Amphitheater straight through the Prairie Dog town.

There are other trails this one goes all the way around the base.

At the visitor center, I got my passport stamp and token and enjoyed a Ranger talk about The Parachutist who got stuck on top for a few days.

I was able to visit with the ranger about volunteering as he and his wife do. And It helped me make up my mind to apply.

Located near the picnic area and entrance to the campground is the Circle of Sacred Smoke Sculpture by Junkyu Muto given to the American people as a gesture of world peace.

The night sky is mesmerizing I sat outside the first night for hours just enjoying the stillness and the clear night sky.

What I did not expect was the incredible view I had from my picnic table during the Fourth Fireworks.

Here is a picture of the boys chilling before the fireworks which they definitely didn’t like.

And the last picture I took.

Deadwood and a mighty Storm.

June 2018

Last night was my first hail storm in this motorhome, scary is putting it mildly but the old girl suffered no visible damage.  I was lucky.

It is a short drive to Deadwood SD another must see in the area. A lot of history and gambling in this little town.

 

The Adams Museum and founders victorian house tour offer a huge gold nugget and more fossils.

You can visit the graves of Bill Hickok and Calamity Jane if you wish to pay admission.

I headed out of town on Alt 14 toward Spearfish SD, and another scenic Black Hills drive entering Spearfish Canyon I was surprised by the tree damage from the storm the night before, the crew working on tree stabilization said a tornado had gone through the canyon, the following picture is the tree top damage.  The local I talked to said you usually could barely see the rock for the trees.

The day was gray, but the drive was still great.

The decision to rent a car for the week was worth it, I usually would not spend the extra money, but no regrets on this leg of my journey.

Tomorrow I head for Devils Tower.

Dinosaurs and The Badlands

June 2018

If you read my earlier post about Agate Fossil Beds then you know I like dinos but mostly the bone kind, however, there seems to be an abundant supply of large green dinosaurs in the Rapid City area.

There is one on the top of a hill in Rapid City that I haven’t found the way up to yet, but it’s on my list.

And then there is this one.

I’m tooling down the rt44  on the way to The Badlands, and this large dinosaur is sitting in the middle of a field. This one I turned around for, so I could get a picture to prove that there are dinosaurs everywhere.

The little town of Scenic is. Next, I got a nice picture of the old Jail but nothing was opened when I went through, but there are signs of life, maybe another time.

Approaching the Badlands National Park, there is excellent scenery even before to enter the park itself.

Once inside it is amazing.

Plenty of trails to hike both short and long and all are ” take your breath away” beautiful.

After stopping at the Visitor Center for my passport stamp and token, I headed back west on the loop road and stopped every chance I could to take in the wildlife.

I did go up to Wall SD but didn’t stop this time it was to busy.

 

Mount Rushmore and Crazy Horse

June 2018

The first glimpse will take your breath away.

You can drive your rig up to the monument there is plenty of parking, and I saw all sizes going up and down. I chose to rent a car so that I could have more versatility.

Once inside the entrance, if you are a Hitchcock fan, you can’t help but think of North by Northwest.

A large variety of food is available, and of course, the view is fantastic.

I enjoyed the museum for hours there is so much to learn. The studio area was closed for renovation, so I guess I will have to go back again.

The Crazy Horse Memorial is close, and their museum is all nations with case after case of artifacts.  You can view the residence and sit outside and watch native dance.

 

My only disappointment is that I don’t see well at night so I did not attend either night lighting, which by the way is part of your parking fee which is good for 24hrs.

Agate Fossil Beds and Fort Robinson

June 2018

On the way to Rapid City, I stopped at the Agate Fossil Beds National Monument.

Wonderful museum and a nice hike up to the beds. Plenty of RV parking.

Then on up to Harrison NE where they have a very nice city park with 2 spaces with electric and water and showers and restrooms in the park. Donation Box.

Next stop was Fort Robinson State Park by chance. I was on my way and there it was. They have camping, lodging food, and wonderful museums. The Grounds are large so be prepared for a good hike. This area has a wealth of information on Red Cloud one of the most important leaders of the Oglala Lakota from 1868 to 1909.

Next Stop Rapid City SD

My Toad died

June 2018

I hooked up my little sunshine Fiat 500L that I have pulled for three years in Denver, and when I landed in Cheyenne to visit my mother for a few days, I unhooked and had no clutch there it was just stuck on the floor.

This car survived Hurrican Harvey without a scratch but not our highways.

Good Sam Roadside picked her up, and I will await results.

So now I have my blue ox and brake controller in a side compartment until I decide what is next.

Next Stop Rapid City, SD

Still not out of Texas

June 2018

From Bandera, I had to stop in Robert Lee  (where my late husband and I bought a small ranch in the middle of nowhere) to take care of some business.

If you are ever passing through from Abilene to San Angelo take a drive down route 158 from US HWY 277 to US HWY 87 and enjoy the view.

Then on to Post and the Post View RV Park which is an older park but still has good full hookups. Post is the Garza county seat and was established by CW Post the cereal guy in 1907. Neat Museum and Old Mill Trade Days https://www.oldmilltradedays.com/on the second weekend of the month from March – December. I have done this market with merchandise and with food and it is always a good market with lots of variety.

One night in Amarillo and then out of Texas.

I love the plains so I always go straight up from Amarillo on US Hwy 87 to 287 to 385. Just make sure everything is secured it’s rough going through OK.

And I like to stay outside Lamar at Sportsmans RV Park and Horse Motel  http://www.rvandhorses.com, another older park with reasonable rates and good hookups.

Leaving Lamar heading to Denver I had to stop twice because of wind, remember to slow down or pull over on the plains the winds are vicious.

Denver is busy and in the summer it is hard to find a space without far in advance reservations, I was lucky enough to secure 2 nights at Prospect RV Park  http://www.prospectrv.com . Right off I-70 and fairly close where my sister lives.

She took me on a road tour of Lookout Mountain and Central City and on to lunch in Nederland.

 

My sister takes photography seriously and is very good at it.

Next Stop Cheyenne, Wyoming.

AND OFF WE GO.

June 14, 2018

Leaving Rockport Texas was bittersweet.  Hurricane Harvey forever changed the future of Rockport and me and mine.

For the first time in my life, I have no schedule. And only my social security check as a stable income.

I do not plan on moving fast or more than a couple hundred miles at a time.

First Stop

Bandera Texas the Cowboy Capital of Texas

This sculpture is across from the http://pioneerriverresort.com/

Where I always stay when I am passing through this area. On the River and within walking distance food and fun.