We started our summer trip a few days ago, a week after I tested positive for COVID! Unfortunately, I ended up with an extremely bad head and chest cold that laid me out for a few days. So, the day before the trip was “day from hell” – we packed and cleaned the house from sunrise to sunset. However, we are very happy to have friends staying in our home in July & August (welcome Rob & Clare!)
The five hour drive north to Hill City, South Dakota was great. The Wyoming landscape was surprisingly green and we had installed “Sumo Springs” which makes the bus drive much quieter and less bumpy. Thank God. Very worth the investment!
But when pulled into our first campground, the ultimate RV nightmare ensued. They had booked us for July instead of June. That meant we did not have a reservation. Dear God. Our first night?? The manager said there was one site available, so we headed up a steep hillside, with low hanging branches that crashed into our roof (ouch!), and discovered another camper already in that spot. In any case, the spot was too small for our 36 foot bus. In fact, the whole campground was too small! We felt like Godzilla stomping around the Lilliputian. We turned around to leave but ended up on a dead end road. Mind you, we cannot back up, as we are towing our car. By this time, Craig was about to blow a gasket.
Fortunately, the campsite owner helped Craig detach our tow so we could drive the car off, back up the bus and exit hell. But in the end, it turned out great! After a few calls, I found a better campground closer to town. The next day, we rode the 1880’s steam train from Hill City to Keystone, about a two hour ride. It’s gorgeous in Hill City, about 1 hour south of Sturgis (yes, the motorcycle paradise), and it brags “the highest peak between the Rockies and the Swiss Alps” with lush green meadows in between the peaks.
Today we drove down the lovely Black Hills and visited Badlands National Park (South Dakota). I’m sure I was here as a child but I don’t remember it as an adult. It’s kinda like God created drippy sand castles out of dirt and volcanic rock. Very worth the drive through!
Our plan this summer is to visit friends in Minnesota, Wisconsin, Michigan and Indiana. Some of these peeps are family, boating friends we met on the Great Loop, old friends we’ve had for many years, and even new pickleball friends from Colorado. We’re thrilled to see them all. We’ll keep you updated as we travel! Hope everyone is well!