Badlands National Park in South Dakota – Road Trip Day 4 Ep.8

Neek sez:

There’s a timeless quality to the Badlands in South Dakota. The scenery is undeniably stark and desolate. It’s an unearthly-looking landscape whose origins are presented in the fossilized remains of mammals from the prehistoric Oligocene Period. We were mesmerized.

The park encompasses 242,726 acres (98,240 ha) which also includes some prairieland. Lex, Sar and I were looking forward to exploring the largely undisturbed National Park and explore the belly of its canyons and pinnacles. But first, we visited the Ben Reifel Visitor’s Center to get a better understanding of its history. Continue reading

Minuteman Missile Historic Site in South Dakota – Road Trip Day 4 Ep.7

Lex sez:

It might be easy to think of the Cold War as something in the past.  With that thought, it might be easy to think we’re no longer in danger of nuclear war.  But when we visited the Minuteman Missile National Historic Site in South Dakota, it not only brought the past vividly to life, it also served as a sober reminder of how the threat of nuclear annihilation never really went away.

Because we had already purchased timed tickets, Neek, Sar and I arrived extremely early in the parking lot outside the Delta-01 Launch Control Facility.  Continue reading

Deadwood, South Dakota and a Cast of Old West Characters – Road Trip Day 3 Ep.6

Lex sez:

Driving into Deadwood, South Dakota down Main Street, the aura of frontier outlaw wildness is impossible to ignore.  This is the area of the Black Hills where the last great American gold rush of the 19th century occurred.  Neek, Sar and I were curious to explore the town, but wanted to get a sense of the history of the place first.  We figured the best start would be to begin with the Deadwood Chamber of Commerce and Visitors Bureau.

The Visitors Bureau is located in an old train depot, the Fremont, Elkhorn and Missouri Valley Passenger Depot which was built in 1897 and has been beautifully restored.  We learned so much about the history of Deadwood there!  The town began in 1876 as thousands of prospectors descended on the area where gold had been discovered two years prior.  Continue reading

Abandoned Homestake Mining Company Hydro Electric Plant No. 2 – Road Trip Day 3 Ep.5

Neek sez:

On our way to Roughlock Falls, we saw a pretty intriguing sight – A Hydro Electric Plant that was built in 1917. This year is the 100th Anniversary of the building so we couldn’t resist stopping the car to explore it.

We could not enter the building because of the “No Trespassing” signs and a big fence around the property. Researching on the internet, we were able to find out about the history of the plant. Continue reading

Spearfish Canyon, South Dakota – Road Trip Day 3 Ep.4

Neek sez:

Anyone who has seen the movie, Dances with Wolves, may recognize Spearfish Canyon since several scenes were filmed in the area. Spearfish Canyon is actually older than the Grand Canyon in Arizona and was only accessible by horseback until 1893. It’s located in the northern part of the Black Hills in South Dakota. According to legend the Sioux and Cheyenne used to spear fish in the creek and hence the name, Spearfish.

Continue reading

Close Encounters at Devils Tower National Monument – Road Trip Day 3 Ep.3

Lex sez:

We left Gillette, Wyoming early in the morning after a quick breakfast and headed out on the Interstate 90 heading east.  There was a bit of cloudiness when we first started out, but once we headed up Highway 14 the horizon began to clear.  Then we turned on Highway 24 and the sight we were waiting for appeared.

Seeing Devils Tower on the horizon is amazing.  Neek, Sar and I pulled over once we saw a turn-out and got out to get a better view.  Continue reading

Road Trip Utah to Wyoming – Day 2 Ep.2

Lex sez:

Neek, Sar and I woke up early in our hotel room in Midvale, Utah. It was 5:30am and I felt groggy after the long journey the day before, and strangely hungry. Fortunately the hotel breakfast room opened at 6am and they had waffles, which all three of us loved. We packed the car, checked out, and hit the open road again!

Driving on the Interstate 80 heading east, we drove through Park City, Utah. As we passed through, we were surprised to see hot air balloons flying over the former site of the 2002 Winter Olympics. Continue reading