Thursday, April 23, 2015

Trek Across a Country: Day 5

Up at 6am to head deeper into the Black Hills of South Dakota (3 miles) until we hit Mount Rushmore. Mount Rushmore is quite majestic, it’s a feat all on it's glory and is a national marvel. We entered at 8am on a Sunday morning and realized our Vermont tags gave away that we had travelled the farthest and people let us know when they screamed Vermont? After seeing our plates. 

From here we went back through Rapid City and headed north on I-90 we got off on route 212.  This route lead us through the north east corner of Wyoming (state number 10) for about 20 minutes, there were rolling hills and open sky. Then we were lead into Montana (state number 11), or Montaña in Spanish, meaning mountainous, and this is the best description of this state. Those rolling hills are larger and beauty unparallelled. Running horses, deer, its all very breathless and amazing. 

We stopped just shy of billings to see the battleground of Little Bighorn, aka Custers last stand. Again we got in free to this national park. The museum is again quite sad given the gravity of the situation at the time. If you like history you will like this place. "This area memorializes the U.S. Army's 7th Cavalry and the Sioux and Cheyenne in one of the Indian's last armed efforts to preserve their way of life. Here on June 25 and 26 of 1876, 263 soldiers, including Lt. Col. George A. Custer and attached personnel of the U.S. Army, died fighting several thousand Lakota, and Cheyenne warriors." 

After reading A People's History Of The United States by Howard Zinn, one can no longer look at the country and its history with rose colored glasses. Passing through the indigenous areas one also cannot help but think about what was left behind, from all the wars, conflicts, and land grabs of the past. How does one come to terms with what was left behind?

All this while we listened to The Island Beneath the Sea by Isabelle Allende. I had read this in Spanish but wanted to get the audiobook as it was 18 hours long (a road trip is a great time for an audiobook) and share it with my husband who got into the story immediately. We already listened to Earth, by John Stewart and found it unrefreshing. My husband was surprised at how we haven’t fought this trip I am not. We really just enjoyed sharing this experience together. 

We continued towards Bozeman, Montana our pit stop for the evening and stopped at a trendy food spot, Montana Ale Works, all around goodness for weary travelers. Sadly, we are just 10 hours away from this trip ending and are still deciding if we want to do it in one day or two.  We shall keep you all posted on the next leg. 

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