Tuesday, July 3, 2007

From Sturgis to Deadwood to Gillette, oh my!

Today we go from Rapid City, SD, to Gillette, WY. Hopefully we get to see some cool stuff along the way.

Our first stop if Sturgis, SD. Sturgis, for those of you who may not know, is a small town in South Dakota which hosts a massive Harley motorcycle rally every August called Sturgis Bike Week. This tiny town of 6,600 people will get flooded with as many as 200,000 bikers!

One of the more interesting things about the Sturgis rally is that so many businesses close down, then rent their space to visiting vendors. Today's bakery may be a tattoo parlor during bike week.

As you can probably see, the town in only a few blocks long. The place apparently goes completely crazy with bikers during bike week.

The official "welcome" sign.

Now Sturgis is the big rally for Harley Davidson riders, so it shouldn't be surprising that there is a huge Harley Dealer in the middle of town.

Hey, haven't I seen this store in San Francisco?

You can tell its not bike week. If you look carefully, you'll see these two "welcome" signs are surrounded by Honda Gold Wings. Has the Harley crowd become more inclusive?

We did make a quick stop at Sturgis BMW. Of course its on the outskirts of town. Just in case we need to run away during bike week.

From Sturgis we head into Black Hills National Forest...

I really love the roads in our national forests. The scenery is beautiful, the roads curvy and sweeping. It makes for a relaxing and enjoyable ride.

Now for you fans of the HBO series, Deadwood, I took a few pictures of the actual town of Deadwood as we drove through.

You can't have a western town without a train station, can you?

It's a very small town. Now, back to our regularly scheduled forest...

I wonder if they sail on this lake...

Unfortunately, the weather went from beautiful...

To cloudy...

To really cloudy.

Before the storm hit, we did drive through Custer, SD. Gotta love their crossing guards.

And then the storm came. It was a small rain storm and for once we actually suited up before we got really wet!

About thirty minutes later we made it through the storm. One of the cool things about these wide open spaces, is that you can look back and see them on the horizon. The dark blue smudges are rainfall.

As we leave the wonderous world of South Dakota, we enter the exciting land of Wyoming.

Eastern Wyoming isn't as beautiful as the rest of the state. Lots and lots of plains and straight roads. But what it lacks in terrain, it makes up for in cool cloud formations. Hey, doesn't that one look like a butterfly?

As we head towards Gillette, I look for other interesting shapes in the clouds.

You can see, there was no shortage of them.

Yeah, the one on the right looks like a puffy, toy airplane.

When we do get to Gillette, our hotel is about a mile and a half from the nearest restaurant. Paul and I always walk to dinner so we can drink and not get back on the bikes. So the way I figure it, if we walk a total of three miles to and from dinner, then we can have all the dessert we want, right?

Tomorrow we ride to Cody!


Edwin Hoogerbeets said...

The Black Mining Hills of South Dakota? You didn't perchance meet a small critter by the name of Rocky Raccoon? Seems his woman ran off with another guy. Hit young rocky in the eye. Rocky didn't like that. Said I'm goan git that boy.

Peter Kevin Reeves said...

I'm afraid I did not run across Rocky, or Steve Wozniac (who graduated from Berkeley under the pseudonym, Rocky Raccoon)

Did see lots of cows though...

Peter Kevin Reeves said...

However, thanks to the Midwestern sun coming through my visor, I do have a Rocky Racoon tan around my eyes!