Road Trip 2017 Day 4

Today was a big sight seeing day, and long driving day. After breakfast at the hotel, we left Sioux Falls pretty early and headed towards the Badlands.
On the way, we stopped at a rest stop along the Missouri River that was a Lewis and Clark monument, and Josie was thrilled when they had a HUGE statue of Sacagawea.

Beautiful South Dakota prairie land:

(Buffalo Gap National Grassland)

And WOW. The Badlands were beautiful. And they really sneak up on you! Rolling hills of the prairie land (which was really beautiful, too), and then BAM! You’re in the Badlands. It was really cool to drive through. We picnicked at the visitor’s center. The kids are super excited to go to all the visitor’s centers, because they are collecting pins for all the National Parks/National Monuments we go to to put on their backpacks.

If you look closely, you will see two specks on the top of that hill- those are the kids. 🙂

The kids were SOOOO excited to finally see a prairie dog!!

After leaving the Badlands, we headed to the Black Hills to see Mt. Rushmore! The kids were really excited to see Mt. Rushmore, and Jake and I were, too. It is one of those things you always see pictures of, or see in movies, but never think you are going to see in person. The Black Hills were also beautiful. After seeing so few trees for so long, we didn’t really know what to expect, but there were a TON of evergreen trees. The coolest part, though, was the grass that was growing in the forest. We are definitely not used to see grass growing in the middle of the forest in Tennessee!

After we left Mt. Rushmore, we drove the rest of the way through the Black Hills to Deadwood, SD. Deadwood reminded us a lot of Gatlinburg- really touristy and crammed together, because it was all at the base of the mountain. It was also FILLED with bars and casinos. We were all tired from our long day, so we decided to just stay in at the hotel. We went to the restaurant that was attached to the hotel, and then we went to the pool and let the kids swim while we vegged out in the hot tub. 🙂 What another great day!

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