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  • South Dakota

    Just rolled into Custer. Any less known must see touristy shit in this region? TIA

  • #2
    Without knowing what you're really into, here's a short list of my favorites from a trip I made out there a couple months back while scouting for a place to live. Needles Highway and Iron Mountain Road (take that one from south headed north), both awesome drives. Custer State Park, basically all of it. If you brought your fishing gear, there's some awesome trout to be had there. There are some great back roads there for some nice getaway time, and hikes galore if you're really wanting to get out and about. Spearfish Canyon has some neat falls up there, easy to find and less traveled. Wind Cave is okay, but if you've been to some of the better known caves (Mammoth, Carlsbad) you won't be all that impressed. I didn't make it to Jewel Cave yet, but either would make for a nice outing if it's blazing hot or rainy. Finally, the mine/Sanford Lab museum in Lead is pretty awesome for geeking out on neutrinos and how gold is mined, if that's your thing.

    Otherwise, it's the Black Hills where you're either in tourist trap central, or you're in the middle of nowhere. I don't care for casinos, $29.95 a head entry fees, or crowds of blow-toad folks riding Rascals so I avoid most of the shit in places like that. I like middle of nowhere or educational, I just know that doesn't always mesh with everyone else you may be with on your trip. Hard to not have fun there, just harder to keep your money in your wallet if you plan your day from visitor center brochure racks.

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    • #3
      Do the Bear Safari. You drive your car through the park (zoo) and the bears are walking all over the place. They also have mountain lions, Buff and other animals. My kids loved it, wife and I were impressed.

      https://www.bearcountryusa.com/

      Wind Cave is neat for the importance it had to the Sioux and when you stand by the original entrance you can understand why they would make it the center of their creation story. Got to give the young kid that went in there with only candle and string some credit for his exploring.

      As mentioned Needles Highway, do it in the evening when the animals are moving.

      The lowering of colors/evening show at Rushmore was good/patriotic.

      Crazy Horse is an impressive piece of engineering. USMC/Sioux Phantom fighter pilot (Vietnam) will be there selling his book, interesting to talk to. I bought his book.

      Badlands, lots of animals and amazing geology. You can pretend you are in a Spaghetti western. We did a hiking trail with a cable ladder to climb, pretty country, kids loved it.

      Seek out a quality horseback riding tour. We did ours in Wyoming but I was pleased with the western attitude - no mandatory helmet, no lawyer involved, very nice animals.

      Love that part of the world.
      Last edited by pmclaine; 07-15-2017, 09:00 PM.
      "...But they would never find anything to beat the old Springfield ...the long sleek streamline, very slim but with potent bulges, all in the just exactly right places to give it that pugnaciously forward-leaning, eager look that marked the Springfield. Beside it, the M1 looked like a fat old man puffing with a lack of training...the two most beautiful things made in America were the ax-handle and the clipper ship? ...they should have added one more thing: The Springfield '03 rifle..."

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      • #4
        I spent a couple nights in Spearfish, a beautiful area. Dont miss Mt. Rushmore, and the Black Hills. Looks like plenty of other stuff to do.
        Stay in Custer, SD- close to Crazy Horse Memorial, Custer State Park ...

        www.visitcuster.com/
        Custer, in the heart of the Black Hills National Forest, is just minutes from the adventures of CusterState Park, Crazy Horse Memorial, Mount Rushmore and two ...

        "Never argue with a Slopchute. It will drag you down to its level and then beat you with experience." Maggot

        "I watched a snail crawl along the edge of a straight razor. That's my dream. That's my nightmare. Crawling, slithering, along the edge of a straight... razor... and surviving." Col. Walter Kurtz, from Apocalypse Now

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        • #5
          Thanks for the replies. We're into history/exploration aspect of mostly. Went on a drive through Custer state park yesterday evening. Saw tons of buffalo, deer, and elk. It was awesome hearing the elk calling across the valley.
          we're going to the minutemnan missile silo in a couple of days. Thought that would be neat.

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          • #6
            If you are up for a drive and want history check out the Custer Battlefield in MT.

            As you drive through the Crow reservation think about how much money we blow in other countries and neglect the people here.

            The battlefield is sobering. Its still in the middle of no where but back than it might as well have been in outer space.

            When you see monuments marking the spot of a fallen trooper they are usually in tight groups. Than there is one all alone here and there well away from the groups and you think damn how bad it must of sucked to die alone in the grass - hope he went quick.

            Bought a great book there about the archeology effort after a fire in the 80s?. Shit from the battle was basically just lying in the ashes. They were initially thinking they would need to use metal detectors but stuff was just lying there on top of the soil.

            When I was buying my book I noted to the cashier the Battlefield is a sad place. She was native American and said "To some people".

            I got the idea that to the Indians it is a place of "celebration". All right I understand the pride of kicking ass on a powerful enemy but what came after/because of that victory was the full weight of the US Army and the end of their free existence.

            No matter what she thinks its a sad place.



            "...But they would never find anything to beat the old Springfield ...the long sleek streamline, very slim but with potent bulges, all in the just exactly right places to give it that pugnaciously forward-leaning, eager look that marked the Springfield. Beside it, the M1 looked like a fat old man puffing with a lack of training...the two most beautiful things made in America were the ax-handle and the clipper ship? ...they should have added one more thing: The Springfield '03 rifle..."

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by Headquarterz View Post
              Thanks for the replies. We're into history/exploration aspect of mostly. Went on a drive through Custer state park yesterday evening. Saw tons of buffalo, deer, and elk. It was awesome hearing the elk calling across the valley.
              we're going to the minutemnan missile silo in a couple of days. Thought that would be neat.
              If you're doing the MM site, call ahead for reservations to visit the actual missile silo/command locations. They're off site from the museum and only allowed access when you schedule in advance.

              Comment


              • #8
                Devils tower in Wyoming

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                • #9
                  Get rid of the car and rent a motorcycle, you are in one of the most beautiful regions left on our planet.
                  Hoka Hey

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Mike Casselton View Post
                    Devils tower in Wyoming
                    Wanted to stop there on the way to Custer Battlefield but that's big country out there. Plan for lots of drive time between attractions.
                    "...But they would never find anything to beat the old Springfield ...the long sleek streamline, very slim but with potent bulges, all in the just exactly right places to give it that pugnaciously forward-leaning, eager look that marked the Springfield. Beside it, the M1 looked like a fat old man puffing with a lack of training...the two most beautiful things made in America were the ax-handle and the clipper ship? ...they should have added one more thing: The Springfield '03 rifle..."

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by ArmyJerry View Post
                      Get rid of the car and rent a motorcycle, you are in one of the most beautiful regions left on our planet.
                      If you ride a bike disregard my suggestion to visit Bear Country unless the animals have been well fed before you drive through.
                      "...But they would never find anything to beat the old Springfield ...the long sleek streamline, very slim but with potent bulges, all in the just exactly right places to give it that pugnaciously forward-leaning, eager look that marked the Springfield. Beside it, the M1 looked like a fat old man puffing with a lack of training...the two most beautiful things made in America were the ax-handle and the clipper ship? ...they should have added one more thing: The Springfield '03 rifle..."

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Ha Ha just opened the Bear Country USA link

                        https://www.bearcountryusa.com/

                        On the first page slide show "Black Bears' I think the bear closest to the road is one I named "Sticky Back"

                        As we were driving through with the kids we saw that sow "Sticky Back" being followed by three or four boars. One was allowed to mount which had my 7 and 9 year old exclaiming "Look they are wrestling".

                        That sow was like a walking black bear sperm bank.

                        For riders......
                        Motorcycle Riders

                        Motorcycle riders are welcome at Bear Country U.S.A.
                        We have complimentary courtesy cars for you to use and during the Sturgis Rally we have open air buses.

                        Free use of a car pretty cool.

                        Last edited by pmclaine; 07-15-2017, 08:58 PM.
                        "...But they would never find anything to beat the old Springfield ...the long sleek streamline, very slim but with potent bulges, all in the just exactly right places to give it that pugnaciously forward-leaning, eager look that marked the Springfield. Beside it, the M1 looked like a fat old man puffing with a lack of training...the two most beautiful things made in America were the ax-handle and the clipper ship? ...they should have added one more thing: The Springfield '03 rifle..."

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          If you make it to Spearfish, go to the hatchery. I believe I once read its the oldest west if the Mississippi River. I was the best man in a wedding there once, years ago. Beautiful and cool place.
                          You could always take Chad and Co at LRI a little coffee. He strikes me as a guy who enjoys a cup of rocket fuel. I wont make a trip up there without trying to see that place.
                          Some cool hikes on the backside of Harney peak that dont get a lot of traffic as they "dont go to the top" I have enjoyed a time or two.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Wall drug... because you have to. Badlands. If you can get in it, the Gold Mine in Deadwood has been converted into a Physics Lab doing some really cool stuff. Mount Rushmore.

                            A bit West is Devils Tower. Definitely worth seeing.

                            ArmyJerry is right... it is one of the most beautiful places in the world. In a really hard-bitten kind of way. Amazing roads, sights and cool things to see.

                            I am headed into the James River area of SD for a Bison Hunt later this year.... And can't wait!

                            Cheers,

                            Sirhr
                            Quidvis recte factum quamvis humile praeclarum

                            Oderint dum metuant

                            "You went full nerd with that reference." Thanks, I will wear that as a badge of honor!

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                            • #15
                              Family Dollar Store on Mt Rushmore Rd. Ask for "Smells Like Fish". Some good deals to be had in there. Bring Whiskey............. Other than that, I ain't got nothing. Have fun n be safe.

                              Midget Porn Rocks

                              USS Constellation (CV-64) 80-83 / NAS Key West (Boca Chica) 83-85 / NSGA Homestead AFB 85-87 / USS Midway (CV-41) 87-90 TRUSTY SHELLBACK Since 1981

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                              • #16
                                Sturgis brand beef jerky.
                                Go to the Sams club there and buy it by the pound.
                                First Stop Guns 701 Main St. Rapid City

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                                • #17
                                  Air and space museum at Ellsworth AFB.

                                  Hang around and watch a couple of B-1B's take off. It's a rumble that goes clear to the bone.

                                  Bear Butte, just east of Sturgis.

                                  Pactola Reservoir. If it's full, jump from the rock called Alcatraz. About an 80' jump.

                                  Take a gun to Chad and have it completed while you're in the area.

                                  Go to the coffee shop in Custer. It's built in an old bank. It's on the main drag heading towards the park. East of Hwy 16 and in the south side of the main drag. The owner is Ilona Mcdill.
                                  Her late husband Tom was in the Bataan Death March. Great guy and she's petty cool too.

                                  Eat dinner at the Alpine Inn, located in Hill City.
                                  Order the Filet Mignon...
                                  That's all they serve.
                                  Go early and order dessert when you order the meal or they might run out.

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                                  • #18
                                    If you go south into Nebraska, not far is Fort Robinson State Park. From the Indian Wars to WW2 POW camp, if history is your thing you will enjoy it.

                                    Comment


                                    • #19
                                      Mount Rushmore, check. It was great. Very humbling military tribute at the lowering of the flag. Good stuff.
                                      Custer state park, check. Most beautiful country I've seen to date. Drove all day. Saw lots of game. Kids loved it.
                                      minute man and Devils tower today. Going to try to work in most of the recommendations. Since I'm a pilot, the air and space museum is a definite. Thanks for the suggestions fellas.

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                                      • #20
                                        When you go to the air and space museum, there is an old EC-135 there. Tail number is 0262. We always called it two sick two fly.
                                        Give the old girl a chin scratching for me.
                                        I was part of the crew that moth balled her.

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                                        • #21
                                          Did you bring a rifle? If so, cross across the state line on Hwy 16 from Custer to Newcastle and I'll put you on to some Prairie Dogs that could wear out your barrel in an afternoon of shooting.

                                          If you want the best steak ever, just north of Newcastle on Hwy 85 at Milo Camp road is the Canyon Springs Stage Stop Steak House. Just turn right (east) down the Milo Road (dirt) until you find it.
                                          Kraig Stuart
                                          Distinguished Rifle Badge #1071
                                          USAMU Sniper School, Oct '78

                                          Comment


                                          • #22
                                            Originally posted by Headquarterz View Post
                                            Mount Rushmore, check. It was great. Very humbling military tribute at the lowering of the flag.
                                            Yep, Im not a get on stage type but my kids were telling me I had to go and weirding me out so I walked on down.
                                            "...But they would never find anything to beat the old Springfield ...the long sleek streamline, very slim but with potent bulges, all in the just exactly right places to give it that pugnaciously forward-leaning, eager look that marked the Springfield. Beside it, the M1 looked like a fat old man puffing with a lack of training...the two most beautiful things made in America were the ax-handle and the clipper ship? ...they should have added one more thing: The Springfield '03 rifle..."

                                            Comment


                                            • #23
                                              My daughter is sitting beside me. She was 8 when we went. I just asked her what her favorite things were and she said.....

                                              the thing that looked like the Grand Canyon (Badlands), Wall Drug (lots of shiny things and crap that kids are enraptured by), Bear Country and Wind Cave.

                                              If your trip heads toward Yellowstone and the Tetons we were there also so we may have some suggestions if you go that way.

                                              On our trip home we hit Scottsbluff in Nebraska and for some reason Chimney Rock really sticks out in my daughters mind.

                                              My kids are younger. They really enjoyed doing the junior ranger programs and collecting the badges at the National Parks. They must of come home with 8-10 badges.
                                              "...But they would never find anything to beat the old Springfield ...the long sleek streamline, very slim but with potent bulges, all in the just exactly right places to give it that pugnaciously forward-leaning, eager look that marked the Springfield. Beside it, the M1 looked like a fat old man puffing with a lack of training...the two most beautiful things made in America were the ax-handle and the clipper ship? ...they should have added one more thing: The Springfield '03 rifle..."

                                              Comment


                                              • #24
                                                Great Thread! I'll be taking a trip through this area in Sept, planned to hit the Badlands, Glacier National and if time permits Yellowstone. Already planned to stop at the air and space and the minuteman museum while we were there. It's just the wife and I, no kids coming. Any can't miss museums in SD, MT and northern WY are of interest.
                                                Last edited by Niles Coyote; 07-17-2017, 08:59 AM.
                                                Good transactions (bought and sold) with the following Good Guys:

                                                http://forum.snipershide.com/firearm...tml#post818781

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                                                • #25
                                                  Originally posted by Niles Coyote View Post
                                                  Great Thread! I'll be taking a trip through this area in Sept, planned to hit the Badlands, Glacier National and if time permits Yellowstone.
                                                  If you make it to Jackson Hole Teton area hit me up with a PM.

                                                  We did a horse trail ride that went from 5-6000 feet up to 8-9000 feet. Beautiful country. 4 hours on a horse (your knees will keep track of time). I wish we had known about this place earlier because they offered a steak dinner service prepared by the cowboys in their bunkhouse. Im sure it would have been great. I wish we had done 8 hours on the horses and than stayed for dinner. The horse was one of the highlights of the trip

                                                  horse.jpg

                                                  Just outside Jackson Hole we found a good steak house that I wish we had found earlier in our stay there. Pretty good food. Its just next to a "Glamping" resort that people stay in high end teepees with all sorts of amenities. Would have been fun to stay in as we explored the Teton National Park. Tetons is where we saw the most Buffaloe and the kids really enjoyed swimming at "Firehole".
                                                  "...But they would never find anything to beat the old Springfield ...the long sleek streamline, very slim but with potent bulges, all in the just exactly right places to give it that pugnaciously forward-leaning, eager look that marked the Springfield. Beside it, the M1 looked like a fat old man puffing with a lack of training...the two most beautiful things made in America were the ax-handle and the clipper ship? ...they should have added one more thing: The Springfield '03 rifle..."

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