30 June 2014

Summer Road-trip: South Dakota

With a long weekend ahead we packed up the car and hit to the road north to South Dakota. We traveled the winding hills of green prairie for 5 hours and then we were at camp.  At first light we drove the 5 minutes up to Mount Rushmore.  Surprisingly, we enjoyed the Presidents and the sculptor did a wonderful job of using the natural rock design in creating this one of a kind memorial.

After that we hit the road to explore the Black Hills.  Our only life bird of the trip came next after breakfast where we were given 2 beautiful Red Crossbills.  Then we kept on driving the scenic highways that flow in and out of Custer State Park.

Little Baba Ghanoush had her first experience swimming - the water was frightfully cold but she did well.

The Needles Highways proved to be everything it was hyped up to be.  We went through single lane tunnels, switchbacked by beautiful pinnacles, and enjoyed the scenery.

Some of the tunnels were exceptionally tight but that just added to the mystery.  After a fun day of hiking, driving, and sightseeing we went back to camp and enjoyed a relaxing evening by Grizzly Creek.

Notable birds of Grizzly Creek Campground: Black-headed Grosbeak, Pine Siskins, Violet-green Swallows, Western Tanager, Common Nighthawk, and an Empid flycatcher that gave me quite a show.  I believe it's a Western Wood-Pewee after inspection, please let me know in the comments if you think my little one may be of another variety. 

1 comment:

Andy Lantz said...

Awesome pics gals! Jealous of the crossbills. I think you're right that it is a Western Wood-Pewee, and therefore not an empid.