Wednesday, 5/29

Enjoyed a nice day with the sun shining on me in SWestern SD. What a pleasure to wake to the sounds of birds and the sight of clearer skies.

Took a nice walk about on our friend’s ranch near Hot Springs. It’s beautifully situated in rolling hills with a lot of evergreen trees – feels much more like a nature sanctuary than a working cattle ranch – which it is.

Came across a year old elk shed antler while climbing around on the hills. Saw lots of multi-colored lichens clinging fast to rock outcroppings and felt the burn in my legs that comes from doing activities that one doesn’t normally do (climbing up steeper than they look hills!).

My friends found a deal on a ranch equipment online auction, so road trip time it was as we took off for Camp Crook, SD to pick up their new find. Distances traveled here are often much farther than what we’d do back home in Indiana. It was about a 3-1/2 hour trip, one-way, and we enjoyed each other’s company, swapping stories on the way there and back. We traveled though beautiful, wide open country from north of Sturgis, SD to Camp Crook. We passed through parts of Harding Co., SD and needless to say, I was salivating at the exposures of badlands that started to pop up in this famous area for fossil hunters. Bruce & Linda offered to push me out and let me explore but I elected to just watch from the truck. There may be a T-Rex or other creature out in these hills just waiting for me to explore and stumble across it?!

Elk shed antler that’s past it’s prime

Ranch views

Colorful lichen