Day Two in S.D.: Custer State Park and Mt. Rushmore

Yesterday I told you about our first day in South Dakota. The weather has cleared and the temperatures are in the cool 80’s. We started our day checking out Custer State Park, looking for wildlife.IMG_6155.JPGThe traffic slowed for deer, but we made a u-turn and hung a left onto a dirt road to see these two cuties up close. IMG_6157.JPGThe grass was high, so we only saw their long ears. We did exactly what the park service asks visitors not to do…we got out of our car to say hi.

IMG_6156.JPGThis is Myrtle. Isn’t she beautiful?!?

IMG_6159.JPGThen we did the No. 1 NoNo…we pulled some apples out of the cooler and began feeding Myrtle and Pablo slices. I think Myrtle had a crush on Superman. DO NOT DO AS WE DO!

IMG_6162.JPGThese burros were so sweet! They loved the apples and seemed to really enjoy being scratched behind the ears, too. (Maybe we got what we deserved, because we ended up with chigger bites.)

IMG_6167.JPGFarther down the road we spotted a pack of burros under the shade of a tree and beside the cool water of a stream.

IMG_6166.JPGBabies nursed their mommas.

IMG_6168.JPGSome crossed the stream and rolled in the dry dirt to help fend off the flies.

IMG_6171.JPGThomas made a friend.

IMG_6172.JPGI’m not sure if it’s Superman’s good looks or the fact that he has a delicious apple in his hand. This burro followed him closely, nudging other friends out of the way in order to snag the next slice.

IMG_6177.JPGContinuing around Wildlife Loop, we hit a traffic jam of buffalo.

IMG_6181.JPGWhy did the herd of buffalo cross the road? To get to the other side , Silly!

IMG_6188.JPGSome were huge! Some walked right by the side of our car. It was crazy to be so close to them.

IMG_6190.JPGOf course, the widdle babies were just precious keeping up with their family on their trek. (By the way, we were good little visitors and stayed in our car!)

IMG_6233.JPGNext stop…Mt. Rushmore. After 14 years, four hundred workers climbing 700 steps to the top, the use of dynamite, sitting in chairs which were hung from the top, amazingly no one died.

IMG_6206.JPGThe sculptor, Gutzon Borglum was not only a designer and artist, but also a mathematician. He figured out a way to transfer the studio model to the historical mountainside gem by creating a pendulum for measurements. It is almost impossible to truly get a feel for how huge this monument is. George Washington’s head is six stories high. His eye alone is eleven feet wide.

IMG_6209.JPG

The purpose of the memorial is to communicate the founding, expansion, preservation, and unification of the United States with colossal statues of Washington, Jefferson, Lincoln, and Theodore Roosevelt. permalink
Gutzon Borglum – inscription at base of Mt Rushmore

IMG_6220.JPGI know this country isn’t perfect, but walking around this national monument I am, again, so thankful to call myself an American.

One thought on “Day Two in S.D.: Custer State Park and Mt. Rushmore

  1. Pingback: Day Three: Highpointing on Harney Peak | Merry Mary

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