Northern Black Hills

We did go back to Custer State Park and attended an Art Festival there, saw Wind Cave National Park, drove through Hot Springs, and drove on Needles Hiway. We saw lots of wildlife, especially when we took some of the gravel roads in Custer State Park; actually driving slowly are carefully through a herd of buffalo. Some were so close that we could have touched them. We saw a lone coyote in Wind Cave National Park, a herd of antelope, and many prairie dogs.

September 30th, we headed north for Belle Fourche, and stayed two nights at the Playground Campground, only $12 per night for full hookups with our Passport America card. It isn’t the kind of campground we would stay at for an extended period, but adequate for 1 or 2 nights. There is an old school building, and 12 RV sites on the property; rooms can be rented in the schoolhouse where the bathrooms and showers are located. There is no dump station, but WiFi is included free of charge. We have already saved more in the 2 weeks since we joined Passport America than the yearly fee of $44.00 so it was well worth getting this membership. We drove through Spearfish, and checked out Lead and Deadwood-picking up some brochures at the visitor’s center in Lead. While we were there, we toured the above ground exhibit for the Homestake Mine.

Today, we traveled to Devil’s Tower in Montana, not realizing that with the government shutdown National Monuments as well as the National Parks would be closing. We were able to get close enough to the monument to take some pictures, but weren’t able to take the road which would get us to the usual observation area. We went back to South Dakota and spent the rest of the day in Deadwood. We took a narrated tour on a trolley, about an hour long; it was very informative and gave us an idea of the places we wanted to stop. After getting off the trolley, we did the walking tour downtown; going to #10 Saloon and seeing the indoor show with the shooting of Wild Bill, then went to the Midnight Star and enjoyed all of the Kevin Costner memorabilia from his movies, toured several historic buildings, went to the Adam’s Museum, and to a casino for the evening meal (neither of us are gamblers). We will head out in the morning, going south through the eastern side of Wyoming-as the National Parks will be closed-and plan to come back to Wyoming in the future.

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