Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Black Hills Exploration

We were in no hurry to get moving today but when we did it was enjoyable.  Our plans for the day were to visit the National Woodcarver's Museum.  Bill has a wonderful talent for carving and even though we were through the museum some years ago we thought it would be nice to return. 

As usual we didn't take a direct route.  Our route began taking SD 79 south to highway 385 which took us through Hot Springs.  What an interesting looking town.
How about a blue bison on the roof of this old building.  I heard they can jump fences.

Our travels up highway 385 took us into Wind Cave National Park.  We saw lots of wildlife including more buffalo.
Bill and I were thinking positively
 when we parked the truck in the parking lot of the visitors center.  We took our jackets in anticipation of taking a tour of Wind Cave.  As we walked into the visitor's center our hopes vanished.  There was a line all the way back to the stairs  but we weren't going to let that bother us. 

 We stood in line and finally a park ranger came by to say the tour we wanted was sold out and our second option wasn't available either.  We could have waited until the afternoon but decided to save it for the "next time." 
Up the road to Custer we went.

Thank you again, Hank and Joyce for the 2 for 1 admission ticket to the National Museum of Woodcarving.  

The movie about  Dr. Harley Niblack 1894-1966 was very interesting.  Can you imagine being able to retire at 42?  He had a broad spectrum of interests and talents.  This allowed him to retire to his real love of woodcarving and animation.  Over 70,000 hours of his life were spent carving and developing his three dimensional animation. 

 Three of his animated scenes appear in the Smithsonian Institute.  He also designed the animation at Disneyland   

Dr. Niblack has 36 different exhibits. They have not been modernized and are original.  

His wonderful since of humor was reflected in his carvings.

This was one of Bill's favorite carvings.  Bill commented that it was actual size and the detail was amazing.

We especially enjoyed the oval office.

Keith Morrill is a resident woodcarver and you can watch him work and chat with him.  

The gift shop wasn't your typical gift shop.  They had some beautiful work from many different artists from all price ranges.  

We continued up highway 385 to Hill City.  The last time we were in the area we had lunch at the Alpine Inn.  Parking was a problem but we finally found a spot.  As we were walking on the sidewalks I got turned off by all the "tourist shops".  We walked over to the Alpine Inn and saw all the people and decided we didn't need to wait.  

When we returned my sage that Joyce picked for me yesterday already smells nice.  What a welcome smell. 
  Turtle Safely.....,

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