Fred and Jean's Travel Photos

2004 - South Dakota

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Neshonoc Lakeside Campground
Neshonoc Lakeside Campground
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We left the Milwaukee area on Monday, July 5, and headed toward South Dakota. Our first stop for the night was at Neshonoc Lakeside Campground Resort in West Salem, Wisconsin, just east of La Crosse on the Mississippi River border between Wisconsin and Minnesota. This was probably the most beautiful campground and RV park we'd seen on the entire trip! Part of the park is on a terraced hill with shaded RV sites. It was too bad that we couldn't have stayed a little longer.


This photo of the lake was taken from one of the terraces.

Our next one-night stop was in Mitchell, South Dakota, "Home of the World's Only Corn Palace," whose exterior walls are decorated with murals created with corn, grain, grasses, wild oats, brome grass, blue grass, rye, straw, and wheat. Designed by local artists, the exterior decorations are completely stripped down and new murals are created each year. The Corn Palace serves as a multi-use center for the community and region. Unfortunately, we did not have the luxury of the time to see the Corn Palace this time around, but it sounds very interesting.

Wednesday, July 7, we left Mitchell and headed down toward Hill City, South Dakota, where we stayed for 5 nights. Before this trip, I didn't know much about South Dakota, but after driving through and having spent several days there, I am a big fan! If only the winters weren't so cold...

Since Badlands National Park was on the way to Hill City, we took the time to drive through and take numerous photos. What a gorgeous place! It's easy to see how they got the name, especially when trying to cross through in wagons or even on horses. Now, of course, there's a highway with plenty of viewing areas to look and take pictures.

It was originally established as Badlands National Monument in 1939, but was redesignated Badlands National Park in 1978. According to the National Park Service, "Badlands National Park consists of 244,000 acres of sharply eroded buttes, pinnacles and spires blended with the largest, protected mixed grass prairie in the United States" and the wilderness area covers 64,000 acres.

The Badlands National Park
The Badlands National Park
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Yellow Mounds of the Badlands National Park
Yellow Mounds of the Badlands National Park
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Besides the rugged canyons and spires, the Badlands also includes prairies: the lower prairie and the upper prairie with "The Wall" separating the two. "The Wall" is a rugged strip a half mile to three miles wide and nine miles long with tinted spires, ridges and gullies. From this term is where Wall, South Dakota, got its name, and has been home of the world-famous Wall Drug Store since 1931.

Wall Drug Store, Wall, South Dakota
Wall Drug Store, Wall, South Dakota
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Copyright 2016 Jean Kennerson