Friday, August 7, 2009

Mount Rushmore, Thursday Aug 6

Randy: We started off by taking the long, scenic route into Mt Rushmore through Custer State Park. It took us an hour extra time to travel there, but we saw lots of animals including, unusual for us on this trip, 7 pronghorn antelopes and later 17 wild burros on the side of the road. We had many scenic vistas of Mt Rushmore, including views through one-lane tunnels. Mt Rushmore was overrun with bikers, but we managed to find a good parking spot. The boys each achieved a Junoir Ranger badge, we got great views of the monument, and we got to see a few films and go on a walk to the cultural area. A good time was had by all. Bret's sore leg hardly bothered him at all.

Bret: I liked looking at the presidents and watching the videos and learning about the presidents and the wildlife.

Reed: In the Dakota/Lakota/Nakota Cultural Area, I liked learning about the buffalo hide. There were two rangers, one of them was Native American, and they were stretching the buffalo hide by using pieces of another buffalo hide. The pieces were wet, and as they would dry they would tighten and stretch the hide. They were going to make a Winter Count on it, a type of calendar. The topic of the Winter Count Buffalo Robe is going to be the history of Mount Rushmore.

Bryn: We got back to campground just before another thunderstorm. I got all of the dry laundry off of the clothesline, the boys put down our tent, and Randy fired up the stove and cooked our beef stew. We had an enjoyable dinner inside the van using the portable table, enjoying the lightning and crashing thunder. The rain stopped, and by 7 pm the boys were out making a fire while I caught up on writing the blog. We'll have to wait to add photos and post it.

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