Friday, June 26, 2020

What's the Rush?

7:26 am - Friday - June 26th - Keystone, SD - 60° F, 72% humidity, wind 7 mph out of the north.....clear, blue skies today with a forecast high of 74° F....possible thunder showers later today.

As I related in the opening paragraph of yesterday's missive we experienced quite an electrical storm early Thursday morning replete with a lot of thunder, high winds, and rain.  I say that to say this......neither of us slept well after 2 am when we had to go outside to stow our awnings, so when our 6 am wake up call came we both could have used a couple more hours sleep, but we wanted to hike the Tower Trail around Devil's Tower before we hauled anchor, and we wanted to do that before it got too warm, so we got up, and by 8 am were ready to make the 5 mile drive with Claude and Gail to the closed Visitors Center (all the visitors centers at National and State Parks are still closed) where the Tower Trail begins.

By 8:20 am we were at the trailhead beginning the 1.8 mile circumnavigation of Devil's Tower.....

There is a lot of construction happening at the Visitors Center the above plaque states, Devils Tower was, and is the first National Monument.  As you hike the asphalt paved trail around the base of the tower you are able to appreciate the different views with different lighting.....

.....the symmetrical columns of Devils Tower come in 4,5,6 and 7 sided versions, and are the tallest such symmetrical volcanic columns found the the world at some 600' in length of which the 6 sided versions are the most prolific. I'll let the rest of the pictures tell the story......

 One of the plentiful 6 sided columns fallen from grace

....the hike took us around 50 minutes with plenty of stops for the obligatory photo ops.  We were back to the coach by 9:40 am, and rolling our wheels by 10 am on the dot.....I love it when a plan comes together.  So, after our ever so brief 22 hour stay at Devils Tower View Campground we were back on the road again........our total driving distance to our destination for the day, Keystone, SD, was 125 miles with a planned stop at the 65 mile mark at the Walmart in Spearfish, SD.....

Not far to Spearfish now the Walmart we bought a few provisions for our two week stay at Keystone, and I was hoping to get a much needed haircut, but the salon was closed Thursday for training purposes.....doh!

By 12:00 pm we were back on I-90 heading for Rapid City and US-16 which would take us southward to Keystone, SD.  We arrived just after 1:30 pm just as it was beginning to rain.  Rich (Of Rich and Marnie fame....they were our managers at RORVR, if you will recall) met us at the employee RV section to help us get into site #3 which will be our home for the two weeks we are there.  A bonus to our location is that we can see the Mt. Rushmore sculptures from our home...... get our site for free I am trading two weeks of volunteer work at a local business....about 15 hours per week, and we will have the rest of the time to wander, and explore the area, including checking out some possible boondock areas for cool is that?

Thanks for stopping by!

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  1. Clarke you amaze me with all your creative ways of keeping costs down, which is really the way one has to do to continue this lifestyle. South Dakota is on my bucket list...I very much want to see Mt Rushmore and Devils Tower. I just love how amazing nature is and the beautiful monuments it has created from changes in our earth. So two girls I worked with up at Kings Canyon live and work in Keystone....the one girl is with the national park service and the other I believe got hired on at the sheriff's department. My friend Chris from high school spends 6-9 months each year in Rapid City. She coached a girls volleyball and basketball team this past winter. Her Airstream got damaged last spring from the balls of hail and its been in repairs in Missouri for months. Its getting close to getting done, so she will be leaving SD soon to go get it. So awesome you have been able to meet up and travel with friends and family these last couple months. Glad to hear Marnie and Rich caught up with the expendition. Have fun and stay safe you all.

    1. Sherrie, it's always amazing to me how friendships formed through workamping end up in free campsites later.... really keeps the daily costs down. This area is so rich in outdoor opportunities.


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