I’ve never seen Mt. Rushmore so thought it would be interesting, and since we were flying ourselves and just for the weekend we wanted a destination not too far away or challenging.
We flew from Denver’s Front Range airport to Rapid City. Of course being afternoon of course there were some storms in the area, but luckily there were very isolated and we were able to fly around them. The flight took about 2.5 hours due to some headwinds, but got some great pictures in along the way of some small towns and terrain in western Nebraska. (My Flying page)
Preflight check of my private supersonic jet
Downtown Rapid city reminded me instantly of 1960. A nice, non-threatening medium size city with an interstate, cozy downtown, and movie theatres that still show the slides of local businesses before the previews, rather than the intrusive loud promos that just annoy everyone and give them more reasons not to go out to see movies.
We arrived just in time for the “Labor & Delivery Workshop”, and promptly checked in. Around town we found some great bars to relax and have some good beer.
Downtown Rapid city is a nice medium size town,and easy to wander around with lots of well landscaped corners, trees, and restaurants.
Here’s much more info from their Visitors Site.
Our 1960s vacation continued as we drove up to Mt Rushmore. The road is dotted with Alligator Farms, Mule rides, and other assorted “World’s Largest” and “World’s Smallest” novelties.
Mount Rushmore was actually pretty impressive, despite my sarcastic pictures. It’s very stately, and the many Histoy Channel shows don’t give you the scale and immensity that you see in person. A movie narrated by Tom Brokaw gives you a history of the site, and many paths and trails lead to viewing areas.
I was lucky enough to meet our fifth President, who happen to be stopping by that day.
After Mt. Rushmore we drove into the black hills. The sea of novelty shops ends near Mount Rushmore, and the drive through the Black Hills is very aesthetically pristine.
We drove past the Crazy Horse Monument, which is under construction. The $20 per car fee stymied any further interest in seeing it up close
Our day in the black hills ended in Sturgis, home to the annual motorcycle rally. I stopped at Sturgis Liquors to get boozed up before heading over to the Kuckle Saloon to engage in some fisticuffs.