Vince's Trans-continental Trip

19 May 2005 - Thursday (Continued)

298 Miles - Arrived South Dakota

In Mitchell, South Dakota, we stopped to see the famous Corn Palace. The locals have been decorating this building with corn products for over 100 years. The designs on the outside are made with various colors of Indian corn (excepting the turrets).

Mitchell Corn Palace

You can go inside for free. Usually there are more exhibits, but they were set up for a high school graduation.

Mitchell Corn Palace

Soon we were back on the road. We crossed the Missouri River (note the bug splatters on the windshield... my poor car):
Missouri River

After many more hours of driving we arrived in the Badlands of South Dakota. All the while there were steadily increasing amounts of billboards to make up for the lack of scenery, most of them for Wall Drug (more on that later).

We drove through Buffalo Gap National Grassland and then we arrived at Badlands National Park. We bought a National Park Pass which saved us lots of money down the road.

At first glace, the Badlands look a lot like the Painted Desert. Here is a view of the trail to the Window Formation. In theory you could see the White River below, but we couldn't. This particular path reminded me a lot of the scenery from one of the Myst video games.

Here is another view. Very beautiful, and very easy to get turned around and lost in. It was impressive that settlers managed to get past this "wall" and to the greener valleys on the other side.

Lest you forget, poor Susie was along for all of this. Here she is, not looking particularly enthusiastic about being in South Dakota:
Badlands Susie

Kristina wanted to take a winding gravel road to see some more sights, but I talked her out of it after it became uncertain whether my poor car would make the trip. So we headed back to civilization.

We stayed in Wall, South Dakota, home of the famous Wall Drug. Famous for its billboards, free ice-water, and other tourist-trap type accommodations, unfortunately most of the fun parts of it apparently closed at 5PM. So we grabbed some ice water but left a bit disappointed.
Wall Drug

One note, I enjoyed staying in a place that was a UNIX command.

629 Miles - Arrived Wall, South Dakota

Day 2 - 629 Miles Traveled, 2027 Miles Total

On to the next day!

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