On Sunday (9/13/2020) we flew from Charlotte, NC to Rapid City, SD, to start a 5-day family trip. My parents and brother connected in CLT so we could all arrive together.
I’ll be honest, I hadn’t heard of Rapid City before my brother mentioned it, and I didn’t know much about South Dakota, other than that’s where Mount Rushmore is. After this trip, I can honestly say that South Dakota is not only gorgeous, but has so many things to offer!
We arrived in Rapid City around 1:30 PM (and began the “fun” of getting used to a two hour time difference). After picking up our rental car–a GMC Yukon–the 7 of us set out for our “home base” for the first two days of our trip, Sylvan Lake. We paid $20 for entry into Custer State Park on our way.
Our cabins weren’t ready when we arrived, so we dipped our toes in the water (COLD!), then played and climbed the stunning rock formations at (and in!) Sylvan Lake. Asher absolutely loved this–and even did all his climbing in sandals! I enjoyed it too, but climbing in sandals was a lot more difficult for me than for him 🙂
We also saw the trailhead for our planned climb to Black Elk Peak, the highest point in South Dakota. Unfortunately, it said the trail would be closed for maintenance, starting on Monday (the day we were set to climb) so Joel and I started discussing options in case we couldn’t reach the summit the next day. We decided that we’d give it a shot early Monday morning, and hope the trail wouldn’t be closed yet.
Dinner choices were limited, so we made reservations for Sylvan Lake Lodge’s restaurant. Thankfully, we were able to find something for everyone (lots of buffalo and steak on the menu!) I had the buffalo ravioli, which was delicious! Nearly everyone else had steak–except Asher, who ate bread (this age is very trying… he goes on “hunger strike” sometimes, especially when we travel).
We parted ways after dinner, since Joel was especially tired, having worked the night shift the day prior. I took a little walk with Asher, then went up the hill behind our cabins alone, for a nice sunset stroll. We marveled at how the rocks have a sparky quality (mica and/or quartz?)
All photos in this blog are my own.