Tuesday, June 1, 2021

Travel Tuesday

Well, the party's over! 

The week zipped by. We had the best time. We did everything we possibly could. We did a lot of getting in and out of the car. We did a lot of sightseeing. We did a lot of hiking. We did a lot of geo-caching. We did a lot of eating. We did a lot of talking. We had happy hour every afternoon. In short, we did it ALL! We started every day around 7:30 and usually didn't get back to the hotel until 4:30. We crammed it all in. And, it was so worth it! We had so much fun---lots of laughs. Never a dull moment!

Here's just a hint of our last day. We started at 7:15 and drove to Spearfish Canyon. We hiked to...
...the falls. We drove the scenic canyon loop. After that, we headed back to the Badlands. After our first visit early in the week, we knew we wanted to come back and end our trip here. It's just so beautiful!
Butch has taken me to see rocks all around the world. 
I'd have to say these are by far my favorites. Well, except for Yosemite---my most favorite spot of all--because of all those waterfalls. It's different but so beautiful too.
We knew that we wanted to come back to do some hiking. Luckily, we did NOT encounter any rattlesnakes. We did see bison on the way and some long horned sheep. You can't help but see animals out here. They are everywhere. That was exciting too! We even took a private safari tour through Custer State Park. We were able to get to places others cannot. We got up close and personal with bison--literally just yards away. We fed some friendly donkeys and saw a baby mule--just a couple days old. We saw beautiful birds and an assortment of sheep. Our tour guide was excellent. We learned so much--not just about the animals, but about the history of the park, and the forest fires! That's the thing I love about tours--the explanation of it all--rather than just driving through. It's always so worth it for us. I want to learn everything!
Butch and I during the hike. This time I wasn't behind the camera! The terrain is a little rough for me. It was mostly flat, but all the unevenness makes me go very carefully! The last thing I want to do is have a fall. Still, it was fun to be able to hike out there.

We ended our trip with happy hour before dinner. We got our friends to honor an Eads family long standing tradition. On the last night of a trip, we each say the "peak" and "pit" of the trip. Meaning, what was your favorite thing and what was your least favorite thing on the trip. That's always fun to see what each person comes up with. For me, my peak was definitely the Badlands--for all of the obvious reasons! 

My pit was "Bear Country." It was a drive through place to see an assortment of animals. We saw dozens of all different animals. But, the further in to it we got, I just felt bad that the animals were so confined. The areas where each species was held, just didn't seem big enough. It was pretty and laid out nicely. This place has the world's largest collection of bears--several kinds. Still, it was kind of sad. 

Anyway, after happy hour, we had a fabulous dinner at the Dakota Steakhouse. The food was incredible. It was the best way to finish our trip. 

By the time you are reading this, we'll be on our way home. We had to get up at 4 a.m. I'm okay with that. I'm an early morning person. Plus, we'll be home by noon!! Just in time to unpack and start the laundry. It's back to our real life after a dream of a vacation. We've vowed to take a trip together every year. It's been too long! We used to go skiing every year, but it's been quite awhile since we did that. 

Butch is the very best trip planner. He always makes sure that we see everything important and all the fun "little stuff." He does a lot of research and finds the best restaurants. He buys tickets, makes calls and reservations for as much as he can. He's just the best! He wants to make sure that everyone has a good time! He's going to be a hard act to follow, but our friends, Bruce and Karolyn are going to give it a try by planning next year's trip. 

We can't wait!


  1. What a wonderful time you have had! It sounds as if Butch was on top form with the planning and arrangements - so many experiences in a short space of time. I love your sense of adventure and your curiosity about new places - the best sort of tourism - and the lovely photos of you all.

  2. Oh it looks like you had the most memorable time! It was well worth every moment that Butch spent in advance planning it all. Sounds like he will be a tough act to follow!


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