Tuesday, June 16, 2015

Rambling RV Rat's Road Rendevous

Mom and Dad’s work schedules at Crazy Horse keep them quite busy—we only have two days off together and try to jam in as much fun stuff as possible in between doing all the chores of life.


On June 7, we participated in the Volksmarch.  This is a big deal here at Crazy Horse, since it is one of only two weekends per year that you can walk up to the top of the mountain carving!  It was a 10K or 6.2 mile trek round trip.  This year, we had about 9,500 participants!  The three of us completed the task successfully in 2 hours—that’s a pretty decent pace for us as non-athletes hoofing up a 500+ foot elevation change to 6,000+ feet!  I feel like an Olympian winning the Gold Medal!


We completed a walking tour of Keystone on June 6.   Not much has changed since the late 1800s in the historic district of this old mining town.   Halley’s is the longest running business in Keystone, having been established in 1895.  Love the old Harley!

Keystone is also home to Mt. Rushmore.  I must say, after seeing the size and scope of the Crazy Horse project, seeing Mt. Rushmore is a bit anti-climatic!  All four President’s heads of Mt. Rushmore can fit just into Crazy Horse’s head and hair!  Of course, Mt. Rushmore is a completed project while Crazy Horse is still a work in progress.  But I am confident that Crazy Horse WILL BE completed, although this old rat won’t be around to see it.  Anyway, did you know Mt. Rushmore isn’t quite what it was supposed to be?  The models all show the Presidents were to be carved down to their waistcoats.  But like all things with which the government gets involved, they did not do what they promised.  With the sculptor dying, his son taking over, and the war brewing in Europe, funding was cut off for the project.  So we have just heads.  I am starting an on-line petition to get another head added to the mountain carving.  Someone of great character who is a real character—none other than me, PoPo the Rambling RV Rat!  Here’s what the completed Mt. Rushmore will look like.  I made sure they get my best profile view!


I didn’t realize just how erratic the weather is here in the Black Hills of South Dakota.  You can be at a place one mile from Crazy Horse, and the weather may be entirely different.  Southwestern South Dakota has been inundated with rain, hail, and even tornado warnings on what seems like a daily basis!  Fortunately, we have not sustained any damage, but it is a bit scary hearing hail hit our tin can home!


Needless to say, we have been a bit uncertain about riding the motorcycles to explore the area, so we took Big Boomer out for some day trips on June 14 and 15.


We visited Jewel Cave, the third largest cave in the world with 177 miles of passages!  And that is with less than 5% of the cave actually explored and mapped!  I really wanted to do the Wild Caving Tour, but no can do.  You see, this tour is quite strenuous and involves crawling through VERY small passages.  In order to participate, you are required to shimmy through an
8 ½ X 24 inch passageway.  It was embarrassing enough that Daddy’s chest was too high and Mommy’s butt too wide.  But I was totally humiliated when yours truly, Rambling RV Rat, got my entire head stuck.  Not only did we all flunk the test, but the park ranger had to remove the top of the sample passageway to get me out!  Truly mortifying. 

PoPo Stuck and Waiting for S.O.S.!

So we participated in the Scenic Tour instead, a 1.5 hour ranger-guided trek with over 700 steps, giving our legs one great workout!  It is a fairly dry cave with a steady temperature of 49 degrees.


We visited the Mammoth Site in Hot Springs, a paleontologist’s utopia containing the fossils of 61 ice age mammoths! It is believed that these creatures were trying to reach vegetation on the sides of the spring-fed pond, but fell in, got trapped and died.   Interestingly, all the remains found of the mammoths belonged to males!  Mommy doesn’t think this is a coincidence.  She thinks the women mammoths just got sick and tired of their high maintenance husbands and pushed them all into the sinkhole!  We will never know for sure!  What we do know is that Daddy no longer stands with his back to Mommy.


Gotta run!  Talk to you soon!


  1. Hello fellow work campers. Looks like some interesting places to visit.

  2. Howdy Steve and Dianne, yes there are so many places to visited here in the Black Hills of SD. Thankfully the weather is starting to clear and dry out and we will be able to visit more of these places before the big crush of the 75th Anniversary of Sturgis arrives the first week of August!

    Hope you are enjoying your workcamping gigs!
    Stay well and have fun!