T R I P   J O U R N A L

W E E K   # 8

THE BADLANDS - DAY #2 - Monday, August 23, 2004

I spend the entire morning at Sage Creek Campgrounds just lounging around. In the afternoon, on my way to the park's southeastern campground, I drive through the heart of the Badlands and shoot 35mm film pictures (count=27) using a disposable camera. Since my digital camera just broke, I'm going through picture withdrawal since I'm now severely limited to how many pictures I can take.

The clay and sandstone formations I encounter on the drive are simply spectacular. So much so, my mind immediately wanders from my camera woes to thoughts of being in another world due to the oddness of the area that surrounds me. I'm surprised by the variety of colors washing over the varying formations, surely they have been painted by the hand of God.

The day winds down and I arrive at the campgrounds. After settling in at my campsite and admiring a spectacular sunset, I walk to the campground's outdoor theater for an evening presentation by the Park Service on, of all things, the Minuteman Missle.

Seems just recently the government handed over a Missleman site (South Dakota was a primary location for such missle systems) over to the Park Service (it has been decommissioned of course) and represents America's most recent National Historical Monument. It proves to be an interesting presentation.

Description & Pics

THE BADLANDS - DAY #3 - Tuesday, August 24, 2004

Being the final day I'll be spending in the Badlands, I wish to make the most of it. I decide to take in a guided tour, then go on two short hikes. The morning's guided tour, called the Geology Walk, is a hands-on walk-n-talk focusing on how the Badlands were formed. Quite fastinating actually. It's not all cut and dried however, scientists haven't bottomed out on a few things, but their theories sound somewhat plausable to me. That's the fun part of geology for me, the portion that isn't 100% sure.

After the guided tour I hike two short trails. What the trails lack in distance is more than made up for in interesting geology. The second hike is a steep one that, at one point, almost requires me to drop to all fours to maintain traction. During my hiking I realize it's a rather hot day today, so, it's a good thing both hikes are short and sweet.

Arriving back to the van after the second hike, I decide to fit in a quick fossil presentation before leaving the Badlands. After the presentation I depart to the east, destination, somewhere between the Badlands and Minneapolis, MN. I spend the evening on the road, making my way to Minneapolis to see a friend. I end up spending the night in Watertown, SD, 200 miles to the west of Minneapolis.

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ROAD TRIP TO MINNEAPOLIS, MN - Wednesday, August 25, 2004

I continue my push to Minneapolis, MN and arrive in the afternoon. I go digital camera shopping at the Mall of America but come up empty. In the early evening I meet up with my friend Greg and his wife Meri. I'll be spending the next few days with them, catching up and such.

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DAY OF REST - Thursday, August 26, 2004

I spend of the day travel writing and the balance of the day/evening hanging with Greg and family, catching up on things.

DAY OF REST - Friday, August 27, 2004

I spend part of the day travel writing and the balance of the day/evening hanging with Greg and family, catching up on things.

DAY OF REST - Saturday, August 28, 2004

I spend the day/evening hanging with Greg and family, catching up on things. I also go digital camera shopping with Greg and end up buying a Nikon Coolpix 3200. I decide to buy a 128MB SD card which will give me tons more memory for picture taking. With the new camera I can now take video which will add a whole new dimension to my website.


ROAD TRIP TO MAUSTON, WI - Sunday, August 29, 2004

With sadness, I bid Greg and family a fond farewell, then push off to Wisconsin. Before leaving Minneapolis, I tour the Mall of America, a grand shopping metropolis and memorial to capitalism. Boasting over 520 stores, it actually holds a full-blown 3-story amusement park, all nessled within the center of the complex.

On the road once again, I make my way to Mauston, WI and settle in for the night. Tomorrow promises to be a big touring day so I hit the hay early.

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Pro-Life Demonstrators, US Supreme Court, Washington, DC
Montana Grizzly Encounters, MT
Demanding Fowl, Colorado River, Western Colorado
Natural Sand Art, Cannon Beach, OR
Arches National Park, UT
Jackson Square and Saint Louis Cathedral, French Quarter, New Orleans, LA
South Kaibab Trail, Grand Canyon, AZ
Colorful Fall Foliage, Acadia National Park, ME
Quaint farm, Carr Valley, WI
Mammoth Hot Springs, Yellowstone
Fireworks, Boston, MA
Christmas Tree outside Kodak Theater, Hollywood, CA
Three Gossips, Arches National Park, UT
City Garden on Beacon Street, Boston, MA