Sunday, we drove about 70 miles east to SD's own little "Grand Canyon," more commonly known as the Badlands. We spent most of the afternoon driving and stopping along the winding 30-mile road through the park. Fortunately, temps were in the low 80s and it was not too windy. We didn't see any bison or the rattlesnakes that signs frequently warned us of. One deer and a couple of bighorn sheep were the only animals brave enough to venture forth in the midday sun. The rock formations and peaks and valleys were not as spectacular as those in the Grand Canyon, but they were strange and colorful and a pleasure to see. There were also fewer restrictions in the park and we were able to climb on some of the rocks in hopes of getting a better angle for the pictures. Before leaving the park, we stopped at a restaurant located in the park lodge and had a couple of buffalo burgers. We really enjoy buffalo burgers and look for them whenever we visit restaurants in SD and the Southwest.
Joe's been getting up at 5:00 a.m. to play tennis at 6:00 at a park in Rapid City. He's hoping to survive the first round of the Black Hills Tennis Open scheduled for July 1-2. Emily has become a regular at the base indoor swimming pool where she does laps in the morning during the week. We're still trying to rid ourselves of what "didn't stay in Las Vegas" and prepare ourselves for what is likely to be added during our upcoming visit with family in Denver. Our latest plan is to leave here on July 13 and drive the 400 or so miles to Denver, where we'll stay for 10 days.