A perfect day & Mt. Rushmore

Our lunch site on the Stockade Lake Trail
Along the trail
Sometimes I just have to pinch myself to see if its all real. Getting to be out here traveling and seeing this country is just such an amazing experience. Sunday was just about a perfect day. Clear skies, low humidity and temps in the low 70s, picture perfect. We decided to get outdoors and enjoy it. First we took a hike. The Stockade Lake Trail is only about a mile and a half long but like the previous trail it has some very long steep areas that make it more challenging than a normal mile hike. I think we enjoyed this trail more as the views were better and it had a little more variety along the path. 

A perfect day
Not as many bikes!
Once that was done we were just a short drive to the Stockade Spur of the Mickelson Bike Trail. This spur is paved which is nice and goes all the way into Custer City. This spur unlike the main trail does not follow a former rail line which means sections of steeper grades, but at least they were shorter. I will admit I had to get off and a walk a little. I have a little asthma and I left my inhaler in my purse in the car, not a great place for it when you need it! That made me slow down a little and not push it as hard. Once we got to Custer City of course we needed a little break and a little beer. Sturgis bike rally was basically over and what a difference. They still had the center of the street set up for bike parking but there were plenty of open spots unlike a few days before. The ride back to the truck seemed to go faster - must of been the beer. :)
Not real clear but this is coming thru the first tunnel

Today was our last day in the park and we had yet to see Mt. Rushmore. So we took the Iron Mountain Road which is a narrow twisting turning road to Mt. Rushmore that has some one lane tunnels that are famous as they were built to frame Mt. Rushmore in the distance as you make your way there. Its a beautiful drive but we were glad there weren’t as many bikes out on the road. We got to the park and found out our park pass didn’t pay for parking and essentially this park is free?! as long as you pay to park ($11). I did get my stamps for my park passport though. The presidents faces are definitely a thing every American should see. The trail that takes you up closer is well worth the walk. I actually think the Crazy Horse monument is even more amazing but both are sites not to be missed.
This guy was right off the presidents trail
 We have fallen in love with this park and the Black Hills area. I know lots of people who come here often and it is easy to see why. There is a lot more to do but we will leave some for next time. I think we have decided to fill out volunteer applications for the future and see what happens.

White Tail Deet

Pronghorn female and two young ones

Pronghorn male

If you look closely you can see the praire dogs

Speaking of applications, we have been working on some work camping possibilities and we may have a position in northern California, not far from the Napa and Sonoma wine country at a private park. It looks to be a campground atmosphere vs. an RV resort which is how we like it. Things aren’t finalized yet so I’ll have more about that later. So tomorrow we head to Sheridan Wyoming for a night or two and then on into Montana. New places to discover on this adventure of ours. 

Happy Trails.....................


  1. We have a cold front moving through Montana and Wednesday is actually going to be quite chilly. But we're warming back up into the 90's by the week-end. Where are you headed when you get to Montana?

  2. Nice~! Again, one of our favorite areas, South Dakota. We've applied for a WC job in California as well, January. We can't wait!!

  3. Perfect weather, and perfect views. You can't ask for much more than that. :)

  4. Great pictures, glad you're enjoying the sites. Good luck on the work camping job. We're keeping our fingers crossed for you!

  5. We can't wait to go see all that. Have a safe trip.

  6. Nice looking hike and great pictures. The Black Hills is certainly a gorgeous area with lots to see and do.

  7. We didn't have much time when we visited Mt. Rushmore. Your posts have made us want to go back and see more of the area. Glad you are having better weather now. Love the pronghorn photos. They were always one of my favorite animals to watch while we were in Yellowstone.


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