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Angostura Recreation Area/Black Hills


Travel day from Fort Robinson to Angostura. We pulled out at around 7am and dumped tanks at the Fort Robinson dump station. We stopped at the rest area on the way up and took pictures. Not a long drive day, with only a distance of just under 80 miles. We made the mistake of not realizing that check in at Angostura is not until 4pm. So upon arriving here at around 10am and got to hang out in the east until just shy of 4pm as the folks that were in our spot used every bit of the day. We will keep an open eye for such late check in times and attempt to avoid places with that. The disadvantage of these times is that it forces one to travel during the heat of the day, and in today's instance the inside of the trailer was up to 98 degrees, taking forever to cool it down. Not to mention, we lost a day off being able to go and see things. Had dinner, watched a show and went to bed.


Wind Cave National Park:

We headed out from the rigs at 7am for our full day of adventures. Our first stop of the day was Wind Cave National Park. We stopped at the monument sign for pictures before making our way into the park. We found a line buffalo bull on the first curve going into the park. Stopped and got some photos, then back on our way into the park. The first pullout had another bull running on the signage, so we were able to get some photos of him. On the flat just before turning into the visitor center entrance road, we had a small herd cross the road in front of us, so we got some more photos and videos. At the visitors center, the girls went in and got their stamps in their books, and Cindy got us stickers for the slide on the trailer.

Custer Park:

After leaving Wind Cave, we headed into Custer State Park. What a beautiful drive! The road is slow with a lot of turns and a couple of one lane bridges. Took some photos on our way through and once we got down into the valley we came around a corner to a large herd of buffalo in the roadway. We were able to get a lot of photos and videos by the time they cleared the road so that we could proceed on our way. A cool experience for sure. We finished driving through the park and headed for The Needles.

The Needles:

This is a twisty narrow road up and down and is a full loop coming back to Hwy16. Very neat rock formations before the first tunnel that we came to, which is 8'6" wide. Nice pullout area for photo taking before going through the tunnel. There was a group of motorcycle riders there that were having a hoot of time. Riding into the tunnel popping wheelies and just flat having a good time. Got to watch a fellow pull a short Airstream trailer through the tunnel, and he had about 3" of clearance on each side of his trailer. We made our way down the road, taking pics at pullouts. A very nice scenic drive for sure.

Mount Rushmore:

Mount Rushmore was pretty busy while we were there. We got parked and went in, and the ladies got their books stamped, and I took them back to the car and met them at the restaurant where we had lunch. After lunch, we did the Presidents walk, getting a lot of photos along the way. We checked out the museum after the trail walk, then hit the souvenir shop, got our stickers and called it done. The gals had a good time, but both Linda and Diane had their struggles with the walk but managed it quite well. They have gone back to the malls in buildings, but it appeared that there was a much higher % of folks that have had enough of the foolishness and are not complying, which is a good thing to see.

Crazy Horse Memorial:

Last stop of the day, it was impressive as always. We took the bus ride at $4 per person that takes you up to the base of the memorial, where we got to get some pictures and listen to the guide with info about the memorial. After the bus ride, we watched the short movie that they have and checked out the center with all of its displays. Listened to the tribal history from a Native American lady and also watched her do a couple of traditional dances. Ate supper at their restaurant and then headed homeward. We got back to the rigs around 8 and let Chloe run plus took her for a short walk then called it a day.


Devils Tower:

Left the rig at 7ish and headed out. On our way we passed by Jewel Cave so stopped by and girls got their books stamped and stickers. Got to the tower around 11 or so, with the temps in the mid 90's. Girls went in and got their books stamped and bought stickers and such. The drive up was uneventful except for taking way longer than expected. Did the 1.6 mile walk around the base of the tower, taking pictures along the way. Diane and Linda were really getting overheated by the time they got back to the car, so got the car started and ac running so that we could cool them down. Temp was up to 102 by then, so pretty darn warm. Stopped at the monument picnic grounds and had lunch in the shade. Then back in the car and made a beeline back to the rigs. Coming through Sundance, WY on the way to Devils Tower there was a forest fire going, and by the time we headed back from the tower it had grown enough that we were able to see the flames in the midday sun from 30+ miles. Growing rapidly, which is not good news.


Sturgis Motorcycle Hall of Fame:

Today was a less intensive day than the past couple of days. With museums and such, the level of walking is lower as well as the temperatures. Drove up to Sturgis after filling the gas tank in Linda's jeep. We timed it where we arrived at 9am as the museum was opening. Sturgis was covered with smoke today from the fire over by Sundance, WY. Got quite a few pics and had fun seeing this place for a second time. Bought stickers for the trailer and then walked up the street for breakfast. This gave us a chance to watch lots of bikes while waiting for a table to open up. After breakfast, we went down to the Harley Davison motorcycle shop, and then it was time to head to our next stop of the day.

Fort Meade Museum:

The price of admission is $5 per person. We were here last year, but still found interesting stuff to photograph that I didn't pick up on last time. Like, the flags on the top floor are actually variations of how many states were in the country that flew at the fort over its existence. No stickers from this stop for the trailer.

On our way back to the rigs, we stopped in Rapid City and did a little grocery shopping and then headed back. Getting back to the rigs, we unloaded our purchases and put them away, followed up by watching the 2nd video for the FMCA Golden Getaway. When that was done, Diane and Linda headed back to their rig and I took Chloe for a walk down by the lake. Had supper, watched Ford vs Ferrari and then off to bed.


Custer State Park:

Sweet off this morning at 7am headed for Custer State Park. Saw a group of coyotes on our way to the park that we stopped and got pics of. After heading down the wildlife loop, we came across a few different antelope that we were able to get pics of. Got to the Wildlife Visitor Center and got the report that a herd of buffalo had been sighted west of that location. So we headed over to the reported area of the sighting and came around a corner in the road and there they were. Decent herd with upwards of 200 head. Spent time taking photos from all 4 of us and trying to move up to where we could turn around. After about 15 minutes of picture taking, we headed back down the wildlife loop road to the Custer State Park Visitor Center. Went in and checked it out then headed back to the rigs, stopping for lunch on our way. After getting back we watched the FMCA 3rd Q&A on YouTube, rested and got rested up to take Diane to the airport tomorrow at 3:30am.


Well, today is our last day here at Angostura Horsehead campground. We started the morning off at 3:30am, taking Diane into the airport for her flight home. After dropping her off at the airport, we had to kill time till Americas Mailbox opened, so we could pick up our mail. So we went to Perkins in Rapid City for breakfast, which got us to 7am. Then to a beer store for Cindy's buzz balls and some chew for me. Over to Americas Mailbox around 8 and goofed till 9 when they opened. Picked up our mail and came back to the rigs. Cleaned our stuff out of Linda's jeep, then I went down and filled propane and gas in the truck to be ready for our travel day tomorrow. Spent afternoon watching movies, napping and just resting up.

From Angostura Recreation Area website:

Angostura Reservoir is a water-lover's haven with breathtaking, scenic views. Offering crystal clear waters, 36 miles of shoreline, and some of the finest sandy beaches in the state, the area boasts many water sports and summer fun activities - camping, boating, fishing, and swimming.

Its strong fishery is well known for its walleye, smallmouth bass, crappie, and also supports northern pike, largemouth bass, perch and bluegill.

The word "angostura" is Spanish for "narrows"

Angostura is one of the few large reservoirs in western South Dakota. The dam was built in 1949 by the Bureau of Reclamation across the Cheyenne River for irrigation purposes.

The average depth of this reservoir is 29 feet and the deepest portion of the pool is 75 feet deep when full. The lake's average summer temperature is 66 degrees F.



Park Specs

Open: Year-round. Between Oct. 1 and April 30, showers, flush toilets and other water systems may be closed. Please contact the park directly for current status. Vault toilets usually remain open.

Park Size: 4 campgrounds with 169 campsites and 12 camping cabins

Directions: 10 miles southeast of Hot Springs off US Highway 385/18

Nearest Town: Hot Springs


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