South Dakota Trip In A Nutshell

a family posing for a picture with a mountain in the background
The Family

We’ve been back from South Dakota for a couple of days now so it’s time to write a little about the trip.

Our flights went smoothly and Lucas was once again a great traveler. Many of the other passengers commented on how good he was.
United Airlines’ new policy of not allowing families with young children to board early is a bit ridiculous if you ask me. However on 2/3 flights (for our second we had to run to make the flight after a late flight arrival) the super friendly staff allowed us to board early anyways. It was on the last flight (Houston to Laguardia) that I was really taken by surprise.
They specifically announced that they would not be allowing people traveling with children to board early (a little annoying but ended up being totally fine). It was when I got up to change Lucas that I was totally shocked. As I was waiting for the drink cart to pass the stewardess informed me that the plane did not have any changing tables! She then recommended that I change my son’s poopy diaper on my lap. I took it upon myself to use an empty exit row (economy plus seats that no one paid for) to change the little guy.  Her suggestion was so ridiculous that I should have asked her to demonstrate for me.
Lucas was constantly looking around during the trip and seems to have developed a staring problem (especially with the ladies). He was very chatty and did not quiet down unless he got a response!
We had a great time on the trip and got to see lots of interesting sites. I think that a visit to South Dakota is a great way to sample how amazing the United States is. During the trip we got to visit natural and man-made sites that can make just about anyone say WOW!

We also added a half-day trip into Wyoming to visit America’s first National Monument.

Some of the highlights were
  • Visiting Mount Rushmore (Three times!) and the Crazy Horse Memorial
  • Driving the 18-mile Wildlife Loop in Custer State Park and being stuck in a traffic jam caused by a massive herd of bison. (Not the kind of traffic jam I’m used to in NYC)
  • Scenic drives along the Needles Highway and Iron Mountain Road.
  • Visiting Badlands National Park and seeing amazing rock formations as well as another massive herd of bison. I also loved seeing the Prairie Dogs up close.
  • To change things up- a visit to Wall Drug was a fun and kitschy experience. They do have awesome homemade donuts and ice cream and lots of tacky souvenirs!
  • I was amazed by the site of the Devils Tower in Wyoming. The ride from SD in itself was an experience. The land is so empty asides from some ranches along the way. Seeing the tower in the distance (and up close) was awesome and a site not to be missed.
  • Learning quite a bit about Native Americans and the story of the bison at Kevin Costner’s Tatanka Museum
a group of buffalo walking on a road
Traffic Jam

These are some of the highlights from the trip but there are definitely some others. I’ll be posting about many of these sites/ experiences with lots of pictures in the upcoming weeks!

Stay Tuned…

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