Sunday, October 15, 2017

RV Trip: Hot Springs, SD - Day 1 and 2: Iron Mountain Road and Needles Highway

Saturday, October 14, Martha and I rode Umarang with Scarlett in tow, through the eastern outskirts of the Metro Denver area in thick, thick fog conditions.  It was so thick at times, I couldn't see farther than 100 feet ahead...we were searching for a spot to pull over and wait it out and it started clearing fortunately, just north of Longmont.

The rest of the day was spent in windy overcast conditions mostly, it even rained and snowed lightly on us a few times as we transited Wyoming on I-25, heading eventually for the turn eastwards into South Dakota....basically taking US Highway 18 into that state.

We got to the KOA at Hot Springs, South Dakota shortly after 3PM and settled into glamping mode.

Sunday was a much better day in terms of weather.  Sunny and though it started in the high 30s, would soar to 60 degrees Fahrenheit by the end of the riding.

First it was a quick run into the town of Hot Springs where we met Martha's friend from Nurse College, Trish and her husband John for breakfast.

After breakfast, it was a visit to their nearby property on which they're working to eventually build a house and small horse ranch.

At around 11AM we set off going north on US385 to State highway 87 and eventually junctioning with US Highway 16A, a.k.a. Iron Mountain Road; a very twisty and scenic road with rollercoaster-like ups and downs with tunnels and views of Mount Rushmore.

We saw many Bison, some really close to the side of the road
that we were on!
photo courtesy Martha

photo courtesy Martha
Signage at a campground near the start of
Iron Mountain road and some Fall Color

Wonderful road, Iron Mountain Road, the tunnels that were blasted for it were designed to always frame the Mount Rushmore Monument's Presidents.

 View from Scovel Johnson Tunnel

 View of Mt Rushmore from C. C. Gideon tunnel, 
he designed the Iron Mtn Road and the Pigtail Bridges
(Bridges that went under themselves)

 Doane Robinson Tunnel
Scarlett and I, going and coming...
photo courtesy Martha

 photo courtesy Martha

photo courtesy Martha

 Near the entrance to Mt Rushmore Monument

 Profile view point near Mt Rushmore

After fueling up in Hill City, we got onto the Needles Highway.  Had to pay a $10 fee but it was worth it.  See the film at the end of this posting.

We did also have an encounter with two adult mountain goats and their two kids.  Sorry, didn't get a good pics of the kids, they had their noses burrowed into the ground, not sure trying to get at what.

Tunnel on the Needles Highway

 This guy came a bit too close for comfort
and so we left!
photo courtesy Martha

 A view of Cathedral Spires from the Needles Highway

Near Wind Cave National Park
photo courtesy Martha


Spat said...

Ride on C6 I love riding that area and you have gotten good pics and video

redlegsrides said...

Thanks John/ was a good day of riding.

RichardM said...

Some pretty cool photos from that area. I especially like the ones with the tunnels. I had not heard of the Needles Hwy before.

Trobairitz said...

Now that looks like a great way to spend the day. Nice the you could get so many shots of Mt Rushmore with Scarlett.

redlegsrides said...

Thanks RichardM , it's obvious why they named it that.

redlegsrides said...

I've been wanting the tunnel shots ever since 2006 Trobairitz, thanks!

Artie & Leinen's Grand Adventure said...

Fabulous! Richard and I will put that highway on our to do list for sure. Maybe we'll be there this time next year!

redlegsrides said...

It's a good destination stop Bridget....thanks for commenting

SonjaM said...

Sat of you, to bring a camera woman along to get your tunnel shots, Dom. Well done, Martha!

redlegsrides said...

She did a great job didn't she? Thanks SonjaM