The Black Hills have been stunning. Many of the trees or neon yellow or bright red with fall colors. The daytime temperatures have been perfect.
Our campsite in Custer State Park is spacious and scenic. We’ve enjoyed going for walks and playing at the playground with Corbin.
Today we drove up the Iron Mountain scenic drive to Mount Rushmore, then to Crazy Horse, and back down the Needles Highway to Sylvan Lake and the Eye of the Needle and then back to camp.
Mount Rushmore was great. We’ve heard mixed reviews about it, and determined that the way to see it is coming up Iron Mountain, not the main highway. We had wonderful glimpses of it along the drive, getting bigger and bigger. One tunnel even framed the monument perfectly in its mouth. It was the perfect buildup to the visitor center.
Crazy Horse was interesting. The progress compared to the whole monument isn’t that far. But when you see what they are trying to build, it is an impressive ambition. The movie talking about the sculpture and his family was very interesting, but something felt off to us. It seemed strange that a monument to Native Americans would involve destroying mountains and building something so permanent and structural. The board of the foundation seemed to consist solely of white Americans, which didn’t jive for an organization who says its mission is to improve the life and education of Native Americans. We did some googling when we got home, and I’ll just say that we feel even more uncomfortable with the foundation and the giant sculpture.
Onward to Sylvan Lake, a gorgeous gem of a lake with giant rocks jutting out of it. The magic hour, at which we visited it, was just stunning. Absolutely a gem and a must see in Custer.
The scenic and twisty highways and tiny tunnels were so fun, it made for a great day. I have way to many pictures to show here. Check out Camilo’s Instagram for many more highlights.