Wedding season has been so full this year with my own MW brides and lots of second shooting. Weekends away from Marcus makes it a little hard making some weekends feel like we have little time for just us. So I started to plan a small trip we could do in an upcoming 3 day weekend. Neither of us have been to Mt. Rushmore before which in my book is something every American should do once in their life!
We hit the road in the early hours; Marcus drove us safely through south Minnesota and South Dakota. As we started to hit the prairie fields you could just see for miles sunshine and grass lands. We knew we were getting closer to our destination when the flat fields turned into rolling hills!
Day one we checked out the Badlands National Park; I stood there in awe of how beautiful and peaceful these hills were. Marcus and I mused over this looking like what the ocean floor currently looks like. We made small stops throughout our trip, one at The Wall Drug Store ( billboards for miles, not worth stopping for) and the Pioneer Auto Show ( if you like cars at all this is for you, huge collection that is entirely unique. Marcus LOVED it). We got into Keystone later and finally got to Mt. Rushmore. The memorial is HUGE; surrounded by trees it sits alone away from the other peaks close by. Marcus and I decided to do the audio tour because are those types of people, but it was worth it and very fascinating! When the sun was gone so was the warmness of the day, but that did not stop us from trying the Thomas Jefferson Ice cream from their ice cream parlor. We joked all night that him bringing ice cream to America was the reason he was immortalized in stone. The evening ceremony was cold, but fun to see in person. The only thing that would have topped it would have been fireworks.
Day two we took a old-school train ride on the 1880 train. We packed into this train with a lot of other people and enjoyed the scenery from Keystone to Hill City and back. I could have done this one way and been satisfied but roundtrip we both got window seats so that worked out well. The train 2 hour ride turned into 3ish hours total, so we decided to cruse the wildlife loop in Custer State Park. On our relaxing ride we saw pronghorns, prairie dogs, buffalo, and burros. We both love and are fascinated by animals so we both really enjoyed this part of the day. We took the back way to Mt. Rushmore with weaving roads and beautiful views of the monument and finished out the day there.
We headed home on Monday and the drive seemed a little bit longer but I am so glad we were able to take this little adventure!