It has been suggested that I include a  Map The bold text represents where we have been and after that is our tentative plan.

We left the campground near  Michael's Home  in the rain on Sunday August 4th and drove into Minnesota  and camped in a town called Albert Lea.
I only mention the town's name because I vaguely remember reading it in the grocery when I read labels. It must be the home of some food manufacturer or packager but I don't remember which. Hormel may have been in the area but I never ate a lot of Hormel products, none the less the name stuck in my head. I wonder if anybody remembers Fair Lawn because of Lea & Perrin?

In any event we walked on a nice bicycle path in town and left the next morning after dumping in the rain. For those of you who don't know our trailer has a 50 gallon "black" tank for toilet waste and a 50 gallon "gray" tank for sink and shower waste. These tanks need to be dumped when full. It's one of the mysteries of RV life that the salesmen don't tell you about.

That night we camped at Blue Mounds State Park also in Minnesota. National Geographic list this amongst the countries 200 best State Parks. We walked it's trails ogled its cliffs and ood and ahd over their bison heard, which was to far away for a good picture.
You might think, as I did that the place got it's name from the cliffs but it didn't. It seems that the grass used to be blue and since this is the first rise in many miles of flat plains it looked like a blue mound. We saw some blades of blue grass on our walk but most of the grass is now green

So here are the cliffs.

While there we also visited Pipestone National Monument. A functioning quarry where Native Americans still extract the soft red stone that they carve into peace pipes and other objects of art.

Pipestone National Monument. The softstone is taken from a small layer at the bottom of the granite walls
We left Minnesota and entered South Dakota after a brief stop for breakfast we drove on to Badlands National Park.


While at the Badlands we visited Wall Drugs. The West's answer to Pedro's South of the Border. The home made ice cream wasn't so great and the free ice water tasted terrible. It was kind of crowded  because we were there right in the middle of Sturgis,SD bikers week with about 300,000 bikers and I don't  mean Schwinn. Have you ever seen a Schwinn rider with a Schwinn tattoo. I doubt it. It's an annual event in it's 62nd year.

On the way out of the Badlands we visited a Sod House which had been used by a "Homesteader" and lived in until  1949.

The Trip is continued at:
 Mount Rushmore

If you wish to see the first installment  Big trip or the second  Visiting The Kids

Home | The Big Trip