Larry & Cheryl's 2013 Travels travel blog

Today's Drive around Custer State Park

Into the park

Bison were stampeding near the Visitor Center

Then they settled down

Prairie Dog in the Visitor Center

Expedition into the Black Hills

Gold in the Black Hills - the cause of the Indian Wars

The herd hanging out by the Visitor Center parking area

They were paired up male & female

A family gallops across the lawn

Playing tourist, taking our park road

Posing for a Kodak moment

Another herd near the corrals

So close, so lovely

A big male bison rolling in the dirt

Lovely rolling hills

Lots of red earth

Buffalo of the park

Pronghorn male

Pronghorn female

"Where the deer and the antelope play...."

The proper name


Bison discription

New calves

Snoozing in the shade

Mama and baby

So sweet and docile

This herd was blocking the road

So we all took advantage and visited with them

Greasy Grass and Sunflowers

Pretty wildflowers in the meadow

More wildflowers

Prairie Dogs in the meadow

Popping up and down all over the field

Very aware of our sounds and movements

Now a couple of deer came into view

The lead deer looking back at the other one

Wild turkey flying and hiding in the tall grasses

Conservation Corp

View from a vista point

Some of the eroded rock formations called needles

Can we fit through this tunnel?

Another sweet deer in the forest

Needles from a distance

Some Needles along Needles Highway

Tall and stately facing the elements

The mountain eroded into these formations

Tall spires

Needles on both sides of the highway

Wow - so tall and narrow

Oh no, not another tunnel!

Not quite a tunnel, this is separation of 2 Needles

We could not get close to this tourist attraction, no parking left

Cool looking recreational lake

So blue

Surrounded by Needles


Wild Turkeys scurry across the lawn

Alpine Inn

Movie Clips - Playback Requirements - Problems?

(MP4 - 4.43 MB)

Bison Everywhere

Today’s agenda was a scenic drive through Custer State Park along the Wildlife Loop Drive and Needles Highway.

The scenery is beyond breathtaking. The Black Hills are a Paleozoic/Mesozoic Formation, formed when a large dome pushed up from the earth in the region. Over the years the softer sediment eroded, leaving behind strange granite formations.

There are a number of tunnels that are carved out of the rock that get progressively smaller, with the most narrow being just over 8' wide. This makes for a very interesting drive in our wide dually, long bed Dodge Ram. We were getting more and more anxious at each tunnel that we entered.

The mountain road began to be more crowded with traffic near the small parking area to view the rock formation call Needles Eye. Since we could not stop to see it, I had to buy a postcard of it.

The Needle's Eye, part of the Needles formation in the northern portion of Custer State Park, has parking directly under the Needle and this is a favorite spot for rock climbing with both beginner and expert routes up the rocks.

On the way back we went through the town of Williams and stopped for lunch at an adorable old German hotel & restaurant called the Alpine Inn. Good food and ambiance.

Later, we went to visit friends Bruce & Susan Williamson at their campground and then they came to join us at the Elks lodge for dinner with their traveling companions, Darlene & Jerry. We all had a fun evening.

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