Friday, July 21, 2017

Mount Rushmore - Friday, July 21

Today is our last full day at camp and a free day for every family to visit what they wish to see. There were several optional activities listed on the itinerary that Kevin and Kieran put together.

We had already seen a lot of geological formations, and prehistoric fossils so some of the options did not really interest us. In the end, we chose to visit Bear Country USA. The entrance fee of $65 was a bit steep for what you got to see, but the kids really enjoyed seeing wildlife up close.

Each animal group is in its own enclosure. We saw, elk, reindeer, horned sheep, bison, bobcats, wolves and a lot of bears. Andrew was so excited to look out of the window. All we heard from him was "Wow. Look, look!"

After completing the drive-through portion of the park we visited the walk-through area, also known as Babyland where younger and smaller animals live.

The kids were mesmerized by the bear cubs but also loved seeing beavers, foxes, raccoons, porcupines, skunk, and badgers.

By the time we were done with the park and the gift shop it was close to lunch time. We opted to visit Cosmos Mystery area before heading back. Andrew had fallen asleep in the car so I stayed back with him while the others entered the park.

With my balance issues, I am so glad I did because I heard it made some people dizzy and one person in the tour before ours threw up.

In essence, the area has several attractions built at various angles that make your balance nerve contradict what your eyes are seeing. You may think you are standing straight because you are perpendicular to the floor, but the floor is layout at an angle, meaning gravity pulls objects towards a different direction than what you expect.

After Cosmos, our family visited Keystone, SD for lunch and ice cream and to visit the site. There were several motorcycles in the area. The Sturgis motorcycle rally begins in just over a week, and riders are coming into town ahead of the event. Sturgis usually draws over 500,000 people, in essence, doubling the population of the entire state of South Dakota for a week.

Back at camp, we took the kids swimming for a while. The KOA has a water slide that weaves between the trees. The kids enjoyed doing that a few times until the line to ride the slide got too long.

Andrew, always the fearless one, was jumping unaided off of the side of the pool. He was wearing a puddle jumper to stay afloat but would go all the way under whenever he jumped before re-emerging. He thought it was the best game ever.

For dinner, I made chicken pot pie noodles and an apple pudding salad. They were both tasty, but runny.  We ended the evening packing and cleaning up pack so we could leave bright and early the following morning.