after standing at the top of buffalo ridge early this summer and seeing the bison herd and waving grasses urging me to head west…well here i am at the cusp of the missouri river ready to spend some time in the hills.
nate and i headed out around 9 this morning and booked it down hwy 23 to the border. i forgot how long that drive is, and i drove it in june!
anyway, we stopped at the teepee for a photo opp. it was cold. low-mid 40s all day. huzzah for cold vacations. (still better than work.)
then, much to nate’s chagrin, i made him stop at the corn palace. talk about hokey. but you gotta do it at least once!
you know, given my propensity toward corn, i think i don’t need to go to the corn palace anymore. hmm.
onward and upward to chamberlain! we stopped at the rest area to check out the new “dignity” statue, which is absolutely fantastic. the placement, the area, the size. she was all just great.
then i topped off the evening with a visit to the atka lakota museum, which i’d visited in 2015 but wanted to visit again. it’s a very informative museum, and after reading about the lakota’s never-ending relocation problems through the summer at all the mn state parks, i thought it was fitting to see how they managed in south dakota. every time i learn about native people’s past, i just feel ill. i don’t know what i can do, but i did leave a donation in the museum donation box. people have this misconception that the lakota/dakota were a warring people, but they really weren’t. they got pushed out of eastern MN by the ojibwe, then they just worked really hard to keep their way of life and lands, both from the ojibwe and then the europeans. i feel really sad about how the lakota were treated. i think that prominent item like Dignity bring more light to these issues and pull them to the surface. learning about the past is the first step. then figuring out what to do from here is the next. is it returning the black hills to the native americans? i’d be ok with that.
spending the night in chamberlain at a super8 in a cheapo jacuzzi suite. tomorrow we’re off across the western half of SD, picking up wall and the badlands, then ending up in our camping cabin at custer for the next four nights!