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Read and rate Travel Journal Entries for Hot Springs, South Dakota, United States

Aug 3, 2013 - Mount Rushmore & Windy Caves

This is our first big stop. Windy Caves was an interesting national park. I am still struggling with my ankle that I broke last year, so I still favor it on stairs. This tour includes a visit to the natural entrance of Wind Cave where visitors can see where the cave was discovered and learn how it got its name. Participants enter the cave through a man-made entrance and journey through the middle level of the cave. Wind Cave's famous boxwork is abundant throughout this trip. Most of the 300 stairs along this route are down. This moderately...

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Jul 3, 2013 - Mammoth Site - a true SD treasure

We toured the Mammoth Dig Site outside of town and it was super interesting. More than 26,000 years ago, large Columbian and woolly mammoths were trapped and died of starvation, exhaustion or drowning when they fell into and were trapped in a steeply-sided pond. The watering hole, active for about hundreds of years, slowly filled with layers of drying silt, sediments, and dying mammoths. The mud, which had aided in trapping the mammoths, now entombed and preserved the mammoth remains. For centuries the bones lay buried, until they were...

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Jul 3, 2013 - Hot Springs, SD - a cool little town

While eating with our friends at a Hill City restaurant one evening, we met a couple who lived only a couple miles from our old TX house in Carrollton. What a small world it really is! John and Cyndi Esch were heading the opposite direction on their summer trip than we were, but they planned to go through Hot Springs, SD on their way to Colorado, so we planned to spend the day together. We took two vehicles - I rode with Cyndi and John rode with Fred south to the little town of Hot Springs. In our other trips to SD, we had not made it to...

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May 22, 2013 - The Mammoth Site

The Mammoth Site is an ongoing excavation open to the public. Following is a brief description of the site origin taken from Wikipedia: "About 26,000 years ago the cavern at the site collapsed. The resulting steep-sided hole, about 65 feet deep, was 120 by 150 wide at the surface. Warm artesian-fed spring waters created a pond that was attractive to wildlife. Findings at the site include the remains of megafauna such as Giant short-faced bears along with those of shrub oxen, American camel, llama, wolves, coyotes, birds, minks, ferrets,...

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Oct 6, 2012 - Hot Springs Mammoth Dig

Day 13 of Dawn and George's bucket list trip Today we went to the MAMMOTH DIG in Hot Springs, SD. It is the largest mammoth site in the world as 59 fossils have been found there already. It is an enclosed site that was a pond and a sinkhole into which many mammoths slipped into and died. Was discovered in1976 while the land was being excavated for a housing project and many bones were discovered. Work stopped and was made into a mammoth dig site. They only conduct digging in the summer which provides enough for them to log and analyze the...

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Trip Journal


BucketListMidwest

Jun 28, 2012 - Hot Springs, SD - A Little Business to Take Care of

(Ron Writing) This morning we drove about 80 miles northeast to Hot Springs, SD. It’s hard to believe but we’ve already been full time RVing for five years but that’s what our soon-to-expire driver licenses say. The driver license exam/renewal office is open only on Fridays in Hot Springs so we plan to be there bright and early to get that chore behind us. We are spending the night at the Cottonwood Springs Corps of Engineers campground about 5 miles west of town. This COE campground only has a few boondocking sites so we don’t have...

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Aug 29, 2011 - The Mammoth Site

The 2011 August 29, Bad Lands & Black Hills, SD The Mammoth Site (Hot Springs) The Mammoth Site in Hot Springs, South Dakota, is the world’s largest mammoth research facility and a National Natural Landmark. You can tour an active paleontological dig site and view Ice Age fossils exhibited as they are found in the ground. More than 26,000 years ago, large Columbian and woolly mammoths were trapped and died in a spring-fed pond near what is now the southwest edge of Hot Springs, South Dakota. For centuries the bones lay buried, until...

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Jul 18, 2011 - Three relaxing days in Hot Springs

Well, after several days of camping, we were ready to be a little more comfortable. Liesl had found a little place in Hot Springs called "Smith Fargo Suites," and she hit a home run with this pick. It is a little B&B on the upper floor of one of the old sandstone buildings in Hot Springs' historic main street district, with five suites that have each been uniquely decorated by the owners. The husband is a retired mining equipment engineer, and he decorated the "miner's suite" with old drawings and artifacts from his time in the trade. The...

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Jul 3, 2011 - Spearfish Canyon and Caravan

We drove the Spearfish Canyon today. It was very pretty but after the Needles and Iron Mountain a bit tame. We went to Lead and were not impressed. The Mining Museum was not open as their hours stated they would be, and Deadwood is a tourist trap. We had thought about taking a trolley tour but didn't. We just happened to be at Boot hill when a tour was there and we were really glad we didn't take it. The only thing we really wanted to see was boot hill anyway and we did. OMG I can't believe they lugged coffins up such a steep steep steep...

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Jul 2, 2011 - Custer state park and Norbeck Scenic roads

Sat July 2 (day 3 in the black hills-I think) We went to Custer State Psrk and did the Loop road again. There are lots of dirt roads that criss cross thru this area and after talking to the woman at the visitor center we tried a bunch of them. The buffalo were hiding today (seriously-the woman in the visitor center told us they were all calling around trying to see if anyone had seen them and no one had). We saw lots of pronghorns, the burrows, and we saw a coyote stalking a prairie dog town. Apparently a coyote sighting is very rare. We...

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Jul 1, 2011 - Mammoth Site at Hot Springs

Hi all, I am adding this entry on July 4th. We have been up early and out late and I haven't had a lot of time for this journal. Friday July 1 started out cloudy with a forecast of scattered thunderstorms, so we went to Hot Springs and went to the Mammoth site. It is an archeology dig and they built a building around it. It was amazing. They have a tour of the dig. You learn about the history, how old, how many, how they got there. For 7 weeks in the summer they have volunteers working the dig-so we could watch the work, hear what they were...

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Jun 12, 2011 - Wild Horses and Mammoths

When I arrived in the Black Hills I had a list of things to see and I had them in the order of importance to me. I did that because the weather forecast for everyday that I have been here has been for possible TStorms. I have been very lucky in that yesterday the rain and hail came in the evening and today it came in the late afternoon. I was driving through Wind Cave National Park when the storm hit. I've never heard thunder that loud! This morning, however, was sunny and warm. I left Keystone and back tracked to Hot Springs to see the...

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