Friday, October 20, 2017

Exploring the Black Hills with our first visitors!

After only six days in our new home, Jason left last week for his first work-related trip of his new job. It would have been a little depressing, but my parents arrived the very next evening to keep me & the kids company! They stayed for over a week, helping us get a bit more settled in and doing a bit of adventuring together.

I will sheepishly admit that this area has completely surprised me with it's beauty. Of course, we have arrived at a great time of year with everything dressed in it's Fall glory and most of the tourists gone for the season ... but still, this place Jason has brought us is pretty spectacular!

Our first day out, we headed for the Spearfish Canyon Scenic Byway -- a feast for the eyes at every turn!

Then once Jason had returned we headed to some of the area lakes - Horse Thief and Sylvan - with views of Mt Rushmore from the road (I had no idea!).

Horse thief lake --

Sylvan Lake --

We even got to celebrate my Dad's birthday (a little belatedly) -- Luke looks pretty excited about the candles :)

We also had the pleasure of touring Custer State Park on a nearly deserted Sunday. Amazing. I was really impressed with the park. It seemed more like a National Park with the variety and scope of attractions and I'm really looking forward to spending more time there in the future!

Bison along the road even before we reached the park gate! They really make our subaru look small!

The wildlife along the Wildlife Loop Road was a real highlight -- many, many buffalo, antelope, donkeys, coyote, prairie dogs and even wild turkeys (of course!).

Leaving the park along the Needles Highway - very cool landscape!

We had a lot of nice time in and around our home in Rapid City as well ... 

Nana taught Luke how to make rhubarb pie from the rhubarb growing in our backyard. SO delicious!

The Dinosaur park is just a short drive up the hill and a great place to spend our last evening with my parents ... watching the sun go down over the Black Hills and the city.

And then all too soon, it was time for our last breakfast together and goodbyes at the airport :( So glad that they were able to come out and welcome us into our new home!!

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