Condren Family 2011 Vacation Aug. 18th

Digital Photos by Mike Condren

We spent the night near Mt. Rushmore in a town called Hill City, SD. One of its claims to fame is the Black Hills Central steam train. We did not get up early enough to catch the first train and missed the second also. But I got a shot of one steamer smoking before we headed to Mt. Rushmore for the morning light.

The night before we saw this profile but waited for morning light to take a picture.

A view to the south of the entrance

The sculptor and his work

The monument from the Grand View Terrace with the normal 18-55mm lens.

Views of the monument and individual head shots with the 70-300mm lens.

The amphitheater by day.

In the gift shop, we discovered this former workman on the project.

Rock formations at the memorial.

Horse Thief Lake near Mt. Rushmore.

We then visited the private Crazy Horse Memorial. The memorial was commissioned by Lakota elder Henry Standing Bear to be sculpted by Korczak Ziółkowski. The sculpture's final dimensions are planned to be 641 feet (195 m) wide and 563 feet (172 m) high. The head of Crazy Horse will be 87 feet (27 m) high; by comparison, the heads of the four U.S. Presidents at Mount Rushmore are each 60 feet (18 m) high. The monument has been in progress since 1948 and is still far from completion.

This is a model of the whole memorial envisioned by the original designer to include a college for native Americans.

A painted bison (buffalo) inside the museum.

Views of the sculptor's models.

Another painted bison (buffalo), this one is outside of the Subway in Custer where we bought lunch.

We then drove the scenic Needles Highway through Custer State Park back toward Hill City, SD. This is the first of 3 very narrow, one-way tunnels on the highway which is very crooked and steep in places. There is a long drive before this first tunnel and then more driving before you see the spectacular "needle" formations. The original plan for a monumnet to American heros envisioned using these needles to carve figures of those heros.
We finally got to an area with parking and got out for the next few shots. The peebles in the foreground are part of the retaining wall which shows the slope of the highway on the upper level at this location.
The first view at the right looks down on the parking area where I took pictures a few minutes before. The two shots below show the road through the rocks.

Sylvan Lake in Custer State Park

Third and last tunnel on the Needles Highway.

Back in Hill City, SD, we stopped at the Black Hills Central and found a few things to shoot.

"Boot Hill" in Deadwood, SD
"Wild Bill" Hickock's monument and grave next to "Calamity Jane"

Adams Home Deawood, SD

Courthouse in Deawood, SD

Post Office Deadwood, SD

C&NW-Fremont & Missouri Valley Station

"Wild Bill" Hickock was assassinated in the #10 Saloon on this block by Jack McCall while "Wild Bill" was playing poker. He held the famous "aces & eights" hand and was shot in the back.

Jack McCall was captured across the street in this building.

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