We had just gotten word on Saturday that South Dakota decided they were going to use state money to open Mt. Rushmore on Monday 10/14. According to our schedule we would be arriving at Mt. Rushmore on Sunday, 10/13. Clearly they didn’t get our memo in time. Whatever.
Similar to the Badlands, when we got to Wall and Rapid City several people told us to still go as you can see Mt. Rushmore from the road and it’s worth getting as close as possible even if you can’t get all the way in.
The plan was to drive through Keystone up to Mt. Rushmore’s entrance; we were told his was the easiest and also most beautiful drive. All sounded good until Saturday night when we were told that Keystone had been evacuated that day because a dam had broke and the town was flooded. Awesome.
We set off Sunday morning unsure what was ahead for us, but hoping we wouldn’t get swept away in the floods. Good news: Keystone was re-opened. Small little western town with gorgeous moutains and folliages all around.
As many of us did, you learn about Mt. Rushmore growing up as a kid in school, you see photos, but we never thought we would actually be here. This close. George, Thomas, Teddy and Abe were right there. Right in front of us.
They were looking good!
After several photo ops we drove through the Black Hills and through Custer State park. Absolutely stunning. The foliage, the rock formations and twisty windy roads. Not to mention the fresh smell of nature. At several different points throughout the road there are small tunnels you have to go through. Driving through several of them take you face to face with four of our favorite men. Gorgeous views of Mt. Rushmore from a bit further away.
Also, a lot of animals. Snakes (I can’t write more about this as I want to cringe even thinking about it), deer, antelope and even a bison! Little guy was just sitting there hanging out!
Wyoming we we are on our way!