Now you might be thinking – why are you visiting My. Rushmore in the summer!?! It’s hot, it’s crowded – doesn’t sound like fun. And I agree and we experienced the heat and crowds, but we managed to have a lot of fun visiting Mt. Rushmore.
We liked how quickly our trips become when we left early, so we started to make an effort to leave as early as possible. To make things even faster this time around, we did not Walmart like we usually do – we had plenty of food and snacks, so why waste time and money of you don’t have to.
And while we arrived early, the drawback is the kids don’t get as much exercise. However, arriving early meant plenty of time to play after we set up. First stop + the pool, of course.
After some fun pool time, mini-man noticed there was a playground AND golf course, so, of course, we had to visit.
The boys and I enjoyed playing while Damon grabbed dinner. This turned out great because they boys crashed pretty early that night.
This set us up perfectly for Mt. Rushmore. A lot of people warned us that the monument would be busy and to arrive as early as possible. Boy am I glad we listened.
We got to the monument a little after nine, got a great parking spot and had the monument pretty much to ourselves. Which have us the person opportunity to take some fun pictures 😁
As it got closer to 10, it definitely picked up, so we left the main monument. But instead of leaving, we headed to Iron Mountain Pass which provides an amazing view of the mountain.
Then we head to the city of Hill View, via Needles Highway, which takes past some gorgeous needle shaped mountains.
The route is not only gorgeous, but it’s fun – lots of wooden bridge’s and cave tunnels to drive through.
We hit Hill View right at lunch time and we’re starving. We had the option of eating local or going 20 minutes to Keystone to get fast food. A little research led us to Desperados.
This awesome restaurant is located inside an old Western saloon from the 1880s! The atmosphere was adorable, the staff was friendly, and the food was delicious. I highly recommend it if you get the chance to visit.
At this point, it was getting hot, so we headed back to the resort for some more pool time. We spent two hours there! Mini-man did not want to leave. We finally persuaded him to leave so we could go shopping.
He wasn’t thrilled but once he realized we were going grocery shopping, he perked up. Both boys know grocery shopping = food. They love picking out their favorite stuff and eating it right away. I think this trip they at 5 or 6 things before we left the store (I can’t imagine what they’ll be like as teenagers).
We spent the rest of the evening cleaning and prepping for the next days trip to Chamberlain, South Dakota. We’re crossing the state to get to the Missouri River – what we intend to follow for our next several stops.