Sunday, July 12, 2009

2009-07-12 Spearfish and Deadwood

Dateline Spearfish, SD
Lat 44.5172
Long -103.8637

Departing The Badlands, we set course to Spearfish and the Black Hills National Forest, home of Mt. Rushmore and the Crazy Horse monument.

It was the same day that the Greenpeace people decided to make a statement by unveiling a 2300 square foot banner on Mt. Rushmore.

To say that the Park Service was caught flat footed is an understatement, as 13 people penetrated their security, clamberered all the way up to the top before unveiling their banner adjacent to Lincoln.

It is not without irony that the image of President Obama was juxtaposed right up there against Honest Abe, along with the message "People follow leaders, not politicians. Stop Global Warming Now!".

A sampling of the local radio and TV frequencies revealed a unanimous position of outrage among the locals, who cheerfully offered alternatives to the judicial system ranging from tar and feathers to being strung up. Yep, this is still the good old wild west out here.

The locals refer to Mt. Rushmore only as "The Shrine of Democracy". Only outsiders call it by its formal name. You can practically hear the capital letters.

I'm not sure how the Greenpeacece demonstration will affect policy in Washington, but I think it's fair to say that some Junior Park Ranger will enjoy his or her new posting in Abe's left ear. Maybe they could install a nose cam.

The Spearfish Scenic Bypass is a 23-mile loop through the scenic Spearfish Canyon and Deadwood.

This campground is hands-down the best I have encountered so far, offering not only the fastest WiFi I have enjoyed on the whole trip, but also cute young ladies who cheerfully deliver cheeseburgers right to the boat.

It also enjoys a large ratio of bikers, and it's easy to see why. The Black Hills are amazingly beautiful, the roads are wide and open, there is no helmet law, and the Harley is to the area what the horse was to the Wild West.

Deadwood is pretty much what one would expect it to be, a wild west street of saloons and bars, only paved.

We didn't stop, other than to take pictures.

Spearfish is just stone's throw from Sturgis, the mecca for bikers, with the big rally coming up in several weeks. We'll be in Oregon by then.

Pictures of Deadwood and Spearfish Canyon are posted on my Picasa page.

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