Our last day in South Dakota was more relaxed, just driving around seeing what we hadn’t yet and going to some shops.
Rapid City has a Dinosaur Park.
It was part of a WPA project in the 1930s, and it’s pretty entertaining. We drove up a curvy road that put a double S in “S curve” and the switchbacks would put a crick in your neck. I think that was part of the fun, at least while I was against the mountain side; it wasn’t so much fun going back down.
Anyway, the dinos are pretty weathered, but that ads to the fun. Al said it made them look scaly.
They aren't exactly terrifying
Next we headed onto to Lead to see the mine. Since the mine closed, Lead is holding on by a thread, surviving because it’s just down the street from Deadwood.
Then it was off to the scenery and more curves of Spearfish Canyon. It was a beautiful drive and we’re glad someone told us not to miss it.
On the way back to Rapid City, we stopped at their national cemetery.
We stopped at the Prairie Berry Winery (who could pass up a name like that?). They use local fruits and berries, so most of the wines were pear, chokeberry, and things like that. They were pretty good if you like sweet wines, but if you're a fan of a dry cabernet, this wouldn't be your place. But the tasting was free, and it's family-owned and very friendly.
Hungry for an early dinner, we headed to a BBQ place I had read about. It was under new management and was our only disappointment on this trip. We did however see this sign at the tattoo shop, which cracked us up.
I really wanted to go in and see the new colors.
It seemed fitting that our last night in South Dakota would have the most glorious sunset.
The ride home was, again, uneventful. We did make a few stops at the famous Wall Drug (You try ignoring a billboard every mile). It takes up one side of Main Street in this tiny, tiny town.
We also stopped to see the Corn Palace in Mitchell, SD. They were still working on it; they change it every year. It’s basically paint by numbers, but it’s with corn.
We also saw some unusual sights
But mostly, it was just miles and miles or miles and miles.
And worth driving every one of them.