Monday, August 8, 2011

The hurried trip home.

We are at the Timberline Campground West of Des Moines, Iowa tonight.  We have stayed here many times over the last few years since we moved to Kansas City.  We left the Black Hills on Saturday morning, and drove East on I 90 all day.

About the most interesting thing that we found in the trip on the interstate was the tremendous numbers of motorcycles headed to Sturgis.  We attempted to count the numbers of bikes that we passed to understand how rapidly riders were pouring into the area for the Monday start of the rally.

We finally began to realize that there were just as many bikes in the back of pickups and in trailers pulled by pickups, as there were actually being ridden by bikers.  We would pass groups of bikes riding together, and the average would be about 12 bikes in a group.  But then we would count at least that many in trailers and pickup beds again.

Finally we settled on 700 to 800 bikes an hour going by us.  But we still might be low on that estimate.  We drove all day, and made it back to the KOA campground in Mitchell, SD.  That was about 275 miles East of Rapid City.  We had driven from Mt Rushmore in the morning and left the Rapid City area about noon.  We arrived about 7 PM, but didn't have any reservations.

As I rounded the drive into the campground the entire tent area was full of motorcycles and tents.  I kind of sucked in air wondering if there was going to be anyplace to camp.  But checking with the guys at the office only confirmed that all the 50 amp spots were gone, but he had 30 amps with water left.  So we took one of those.

I cashed in some of my points that have built up on the KOA account, so it only cost $20 for the night.

In addition to the Sturgis people, it was Saturday night and the ordinary weekend family campers were burning the usual fires and staying up most of the night telling stories.

I was too tired to care what was going on in the rest of the campground, but began working on the post with all the pictures of the animals in the Custer State Park.  To add to the evening, it was later than I thought, because we had traveled back into the Central time zone again and lost an hour as well.

We slept in to almost 9 AM on Sunday morning, and by the time we were packing up, the Sturgis folks were long gone.  We messed around and still had to use the dump station before we could leave.  It was Sunday and there was a line there too.

Once on the road, we didn't stop for anything.  Well, once for diesel, and about a half hour to eat some lunch, but otherwise we ended up in Des Moines about 6 PM.  The lady that owns the Timberline                 park, recognized  me as I walked in the office.  "Now I remember who you are," she said.

So we are here for the night, and went over to see my wife's sister for a few hours.  We had to meet her new puppy for the first time, but I completely spaced off taking the camera.  So go ahead and scream at me for not getting the cute puppy shot!

Tomorrow is on into KC, as we have the contractor waiting!

Retired Rod


  1. Geez Rod what are we going to do with you, no cute puppy shots???

  2. You should have been exhausted after a day like you had. Sure enjoyed your SD posts now that I've finally caught up on them again.

  3. Wow you pile the miles on don't you. I usually take two days just to cross S Dakota. or Nebraska. I like US 30 across Nebraska. because it is right alongside the UPRR all the way. nonstop trains. Just got back from the Lake. Now I need to rest from my vacation. Be safe out there. Sam & Donna...PS we stayed at the Mt Rushmore KOa too, nice park...


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