I hardly like to blog vacation trips without pictures, but since the camera for the trip was destroyed in our last episode, you'll just have to take a thousand words for it. After laying in supplies at the Evil*Empire outpost in Spearfish, we headed for Devil's Tower. Since it is off season, we opted to take photos from the pull-offs, and enjoy our drive rather than enter the park. We will definitely be returning to climb at some point. Among the aforementioned supplies were disposable cameras from Aunt Vicky that the kids though were the best ever. I'm a little nonplussed at the idea of actually sending film to be developed, but I'm sure I'll figure it out.
We looped back into South Dakota, and down to Deadwood, where we whiled away a gorgeous afternoon Checking out historical sites and trying to find kid-friendly stuff among the casinos. It can be done, but next time I'll have to check out more than just the Bullock hotel on teh interwebs before we head in.
We headed to Hill City from Deadwood, stopping at a gorgeous reservoir for pics and stretching. We returned to the Hill City Super 8. This place is your typical economy motel, clean and well-kept, but it houses Jacki the teddy bear lady and John John, the front desk dog. Jacki has the world record teddy bear collection housed on site, 5504 the day we visited. The teens and kids used the pool, and the adults wandered downtown to explore the nightlife, which is apparently Wii bowling and pool.
Fog and a sick kid altered Wednesday's plans. Thing 4 awoke cranky, itchy, and eventually puking. Thing 1 has seen Mt. Rushmore 3 times in the last two years, so she volunteered to accompany me and in heading home early with her brother. Aunt Vicky decided to come as well, so we headed out and left the other carload to explore at their leisure. Thing 4 slept off whatever was ailing him, whether he had a bad reaction to chlorine or a little bug we never did figure out. Benadryl and some TLC seemed to be enough to soothe him. The other carload bypassed Crazy Horse as the fog made it unviewable, and opted to drive through Custer State park, where they got the picture book, buffalo-on-the-road wildlife tour they hoped for. They wandered back up to Mt. Rushmore, where the fog bobbed and lifted just enough for some pics, then headed to Rapid City to eat and explore Cabella's or, "toys for boys" as our Berliners described it. We all arrived safely home, if drained from long South Dakota roads. Pictures to follow...