Monday, May 30, 2011

Camp Across America - South Dakota & Minnesota

The last two days were absolutely awful in regards to the weather. So much for camping - we had to stay at a KOA Kabin the last two nights due to RAIN, RAIN, RAIN.  And on top of all the rain, it was also very cold! We were not sure what to make of all this cold and gloom seeing as it is Memorial Day weekend! 

Sunday we ventured out of the campsite to try and see Mount Rushmore. It was so dense with fog that we decided to skip it and see the Crazy Horse Memorial instead. Ron was fairly interested in it although he said that he would have more interest if it was anywhere near complete after 63 years. Yes, that's right. it has been in progress for 63 years and only the face has been completed. While some might say that this is because the "artist" and his family have not accepted government funding for the project, we learned that many famous memorial and monuments were completed in less time on mostly or entirely private funding, not withstanding Mount Rushmore itself. That being said, Kelly could not have been less impressed by the Crazy Horse Memorial. 

This is what the memorial is supposed to look like. 

This is what it actually looks like. 

Another reason Kelly may have been so disinterested in the memorial could have been the cold. She was not amused by the mounds of snow she found lying about. 

Today we found a very brief break in the crappy weather and hustled up to Mount Rushmore to see if we could get a glimpse of the great faces before the fog consumed them again. We were in luck! We got this great shot from the main observation deck. 

Kelly is always happy to visit places honoring our forefathers....and Teddy Roosevelt.... who she's sure was also a very good president.... we guess....

And then we were on our way. Our first point of interest on today's journey was Wall Drug which was a stop recommended by Kelly's brother who had been by it before. We were entertained for miles before reaching the destination with many, many, many, many, many signs and billboards along the highway. We were so not disappointed with all the hype!

There were so many interesting statues that we were compelled to jump in and pose with a few. 

Plenty of oddities to see as well...

One of Wall Drug's claims to fame is their "Free Ice Water" advertised never subtly on signs and billboards galore! Kelly, being an avid water drinker (can you be avid at water drinking?) filled up.  

Another fun moment was watching this T-Rex come to life and scare the crap out of any small children nearby. It was hard to to laugh at their terrified shrieks. 

We also tried our hands at the shooting range. Kelly's dad would be proud of her gunslinging skills! 

Down the road some more in Mitchell, South Dakota was the Corn Palace

Here is Ron with "Cornelius." 

The Corn Palace changes the outside of the building by making murals out of corn. You can see the many different looks the building has had over the years by clicking the link above. Currently it portrays an "American Pride" theme. 

The Corn Palace is a little underwhelming inside unless you have a very keen interest in Corn and/or the history of roadside attractions in Mitchell, SD. The best part of the detour was scoring free corn balls by checking in on Foursquare!

We finally arrived in Minnesota just a few hours ago. It is extremely windy here and we're expecting thunderstorms.... which means we're in a KOA Kabin again tonight.  We're very nervous about the upcoming weather as we head into Illinois, so please keep us in your prayers as we travel over the next few days. 


South Dakota Office of Tourism said...

Nice pictures of your time in South Dakota! I enjoyed reading about some of your adventures here!

Thanks for sharing,
Katlyn Richter
South Dakota Dept. Tourism
Facebook - South Dakota Tourism

Ron & Kelly Morrissette said...

Thanks for checking out our blog Katlyn! We were excited to see your comment! We had a great time in SD and will definitely be back one day!