Saturday, August 6, 2011

The Ride of ALL Rides!

Two years ago, Wayne and some friends rode out to Sturgis, SD for the Black Hills Rally, leaving me behind. This year, though, Wayne and I rode out together. We went a little ahead of the rally, but that's okay- less crowds and the same beautiful scenery. We had great riding weather- a little hot the first couple of days (106 degrees!!) but much more pleasant (low 80s) the rest of the time...and best of all, we didn't get rained on!!! Here are some pictures from our road trip:

Main Street, Sturgis, SD

Mount Rushmore, Keystone, SD

Our first trip through Custer State Park on the search for buffalo. We didn't find buffalo then but we saw pronghorn deer.

...and lots of cute and very friendly wild donkeys!

Heading to Devil's Tower in Wyoming

Spearfish Canyon. My favorite ride. This is Bridal Veil Falls in the canyon.

The first day that we were there we rode the Iron Mountain Road. I was NOT quite ready for those hairpin turns!! Later we rode through with me on the back of Wayne's bike so I could actually "enjoy" the ride and take pictures. The last day that we were there I did ride it again on my own bike and did much better.

Pigtail bridge:

There are several tunnels to go through along the road. Check out Mount Rushmore in the background.

One of the pigtail bridges...

...and again...they really were SO cool!

Beautiful scenery along the way.

Lots of turns...

One of the many sharp U-turns...

Our 2nd trip through Custer on the search for those elusive buffalo...ignore those kids...they're not mine!

Needles Highway. Beautiful but a little scary in places!

This is why it's called "Needles".

A tunnel along Needles Highway. Can you believe a tour bus goes through this? But only if they let some air out of their tires and pull in their side mirrors! Only one bus is allowed through there per day because it takes so long!

The Badlands:

It was like a whole 'nother planet!

The bikes in the Badlands:

Back to Custer- our 3rd try and....BUFFALO!!!! When we rounded one of the first curves coming in from the backside of Custer, look what we found standing right along the side of the road. He didn't even look up at us...he was a juvenile, but he was still huge!

A little further into the park we happened to see hundreds of buffalo going through a ravine.

This was at the entrance/exit of the park as we were leaving...we happened to meet up with one buffalo who didn't like blue motorcycles. We were waiting for them to cross the road and one (either a juvenile or a mother, we're not sure which) decided she was going to charge Wayne. She stomped her feet, snorted, tucked her head and charged at him. He hit the throttle to get away from her and then she decided to turn on me. She charged me, too, but luckily I think it was all a show on her part. If she REALLY had have wanted to get us she would've! Anyway, all ended well and we have a story to tell! :)

Crazy Horse Mountain. This was taken on the highway to the monument.

This is what the monument will look like once it's finished, but since this was started in 1948, I doubt it'll be finished in my lifetime! It's so HUGE!!

While at Crazy Horse, we ate lunch in the restaurant there. I finally had a buffalo burger and it was delicious!! Wayne had buffaloski which is a kielbasa-like sausage on a roll with onions. It was sort of our revenge against the buffalo that charged us! :) We also had fry bread for dessert.

We found several wonderful roads to ride. On one ride, we discovered this lake- Pactola Lake. SO beautiful! I'd love to have a house along this lake!!

This trip was definitely an adventure...and it was wonderful!!! When God created South Dakota, he must have had bikers in mind!!!