Thursday, May 21, 2009

Badlands, South Dakota

WARNING: LOTS of pictures!

Today we started out in search of America's Mailbox to set up an account and become South Dakota residents. As we were going over the paperwork we found out the vehicle registrations were going to be a lot higher than we were paying in Florida. Like four times higher for the 5th wheel and about the same for the truck. We only pay $34 a year to register the 5th wheel in Florida and here it's $156!! Rod emailed our insurance company (since we don't have cell service) to find out what our savings would be for our insurance here. It may not be worth it to change our residency. We'll have to wait and see what happens.

We had planned on taking care of drivers licenses and vehicle licenses and registering to vote today but that wasn't going to happen until we hear back from the insurance company. Sooooo, what to do for the rest of the day? We decided to check out the visitor's center and see what kind of car trips we could do since it was only 60 degrees. They suggested the Badlands and Wall.

We entered the Badlands from the south on Highway 44 and drove through the Buffalo Gap Grasslands before entering the park. There was LOTS of road construction going on and we had to follow a pilot car for about 15 miles. It was extremely dusty and bumpy.

The Badlands are really awesome! The landscape is amazing! The spires are slowly being washed away every time it rains though. Geologists predict in 500,000 years the Badlands will be gone. So, you better hurry and get here to see it. LOL Also part of the Badlands is the grass prairies. The wildlife there includes Black Footed Ferrets, Swift Fox, Bison, Rattlesnakes, Coyotes, Bobcats, Bighorn Sheep, Porcupines and Prairie Dogs. The only thing we saw were the prairie dogs. They were so cute. They were just as interested in us as we were with them. We also saw lots of Turkey Vultures. Seems like we see those just about everywhere we go.

The Badlands

Prairie Dogs and Turkey Vulture

This sign would have been appropriate if we had been towing

Wall is a city north of the Badlands that sits right on Interstate 90 and is famous for its drug store that offers free ice water. The drug store has been in existence since 1930 and people used to drive right by to wherever they were going so to get people to stop in they started offering the free water. It worked. Now, it's a mall with other shops but they still have the soda fountain and homemade ice cream, although it was closed by the time we got there at 6:30. Interesting place.

Giant Jackelope in the back of the store

I saw this sign on one of the walls and really loved what it said

On the way home we stopped at a Subway and picked up a $5 footlong to split. Not sure yet what we're going to do tomorrow but there's so much to do in this area we won't even be able to scratch the surface.


Anonymous said...

oh well you had better hurry to see Drumhellers bad lands cause they might be gone by then too. Looks like a really neat place Deb. Have fun and hope the weather warms up soon. You write excellent blogs so please keep it up.


Randy and Terry said...

Wow! I can't believe it's that much to register your 5th wheel! We only pay about $95 for ours. Both the truck and the 5th wheel are less than that. Interesting.

Glad you're having a good time anyway. Sure wish we could meet up somewhere along the way. Don't you want to come to PA this summer????

All Because Two People Fell In Love said...

Sounds like you all are on an adventure. Whether or not you move your residency it sure looks like ya'll are having fun. Ya'll take care and stay safe.

Rollie & Gina

Rod and Loyce Ivers said...

But do you have any personal property tax on the vehicles? That is what kills you. In both Kansas and Missouri, you have property tax over and above the registrations. For three vehicles in Kansas, I will pay over $1,000 this month, and that doesn't include the RV or any of the Boats that are at the fishing cabin in Missouri. Seems like that tax bill was close to a thousand last winter too.
Both states have six percent income tax as well. Makes you wonder why anyone would live here, LOL.

David Sussman said...

Thank you Deb for taking me to South Dakota.It is on my bucket list, of places I want to visit.Your pivtures and cpmments made mr want to go even more.Be interested to see how the numbers work out as far as inxurance and registration.

Bob and Molly said...

What a great place to be! Those Black Hills are wonderful!
If you come across the Alpine Inn, don't miss the $7.95 Filet is a wonderful meal....and we all know you need more great must be wasteing away to nothing by now! LOL
Hugs to both of you! M&B

Leno said...

Wow, that is really interesting about the price to register. How come so many people go there to do that?
Can't wait to get there to explore. Its been about 35 years since we've been there.
Nice pics..

Joe and Sherri said...

We will just stick with is cheaper all around.

Anonymous said...

Wow. How beautiful.
Even though I didn't see any "water" I still think it is gorgeous. What the mind can conjur up as far as pioneers traversing thie part of the country! Enjoy for me also.

Jim and Dee said...

Thanks for the blog. I've never seen the badlands, guess we better hurry and get there. I'm anxious to know what you find out about the change in home state.