Well, just after making my last post, I returned to the campground in the wee hours. As a courtesy to my fellow campers, I drove in with just my running lights on. As I rounded the corner, two deer appeared directly adjacent to my Element!
I arose Monday morning to be greeted by a woman who was riding her bike solo 900 miles in the course of three weeks. All she needed for camping was a single panier on the front wheel of her bike! She said she didn't care about what she smelled like!
After viewing more of the rock formations, I dropped down to below the butte and dined amongst the caverns and multi-colored rock. I met a 23 year old woman from North Carolina who had no job and decided she was going to back-country camp solo for 4 1/2 months out west. She decided she would make lemonade out of lemons!
I share these stories with all of you, because I am hardly doing something as daring as these two ladies! I've got the comfort of my Element, which is actually working out spectacularly.
After leaving the Badlands, I made the obligatory stop at Wall Drug. It is the South of the Border of the West. I first started seeing signs 355 miles away in Minnesota. It was interesting and I got a few more supplies. Ready for the Black Hills!
I arrived at Mt Rushmore in the mid-afternoon. It was much more compelling and interesting than I had expected. The artist, Borglund, was an amazing man and there is quite a lot to the story and I'm glad I attended a program on the construction of the monument. After leaving there, I went to another stone memorial under construction... Crazy Horse. When completed, if completed, it will dwarf Rushmore. Right now, his face is the only part finished and it is 4 times the height of the 60 foot profiles on Rushmore.
On the way to my campsite for the evening, I drove down the Needles Highway. What a spectacular drive through one-way tunnels, hairpin turns, and stone spires! On my way near dusk, I encountered three more white-tailed deer off the side of the road.
In a word, my campsite sucked. It was sloped about 20%. I spent the evening sleeping pinned to the inside of my Element!