We all enjoyed this roadside stop on the way to Mount Rushmore. Their tag line is “where science meets fun”, and it’s true! The tour can really throw you for a loop even if you are an engineer and understand what’s going on! The kids also LOVED panning for gems and fossils.
Riding ATVs through the Black Hills of South Dakota may have been THE #1 adventure of our entire trip. There is just something about the grassy hills, fields of wild flowers, and granite outcroppings that makes this place absolutely magical. We rented a six seater ATV from Mystic Hills Hideaway which made it easy to jump on the were endless trails, logging and forest service roads. We packed a lunch and found the perfect spot to enjoy a picnic and daydream of buying a little place out here in the Black Hills…ahh, maybe one day. 😉
“We are officially surrounded”….never in my life would I have expected us to be surrounded by a herd of about 800 Buffalo! Custer State Park is another one of those too beautiful to be real places. Their resort offers a Buffalo Jeep Safari so we met up with our guide Randy before 6am to get out and up close with some wildlife! The kids had keen eyes and helped us spot Antelope, White Tail and Mule Deer, Turkeys, Prairie Dogs, and it was hard to miss the almost 1,000 strong herd of Buffalo! Randy helped educate us on the Buffalo as well as the history of the park…and he took us to spots to appreciate the landscape and wildlife. It was truly a 10/10 experience!
All aboard!!! The littles were certainly looking forward to their train ride. We hopped on the historic 1880 train in Keystone and rode to Hill City trying time imagine what it would have been to live out here in the times of the gold rush. The return trip to Keystone gave us a glimpse into the past with a re-enactment of a shootout between robbers and Marshalls. It was exciting and entertaining for sure!
We stopped by the world famous Wall Drug Store on our way to the Badlands. It’s more like a mall!
We took a 1.3 mile HOT hike in Badlands National Park called the Notch Trail. It was far more adventurous than a 1.3 mile hike would normally be. We used a rope climb and had to stay sure footed with loose rocks and steep drop offs. The landscape there is so unusual that it captivates and intimidates you all at the same time.
COLORADO SPRINGS, CO (Week 1)
Biking down Pikes Peak and rafting down Arkansas River.
GRAND TETON NATIONAL PARK AND YELLOWSTONE NATIONAL PARK (Week 3)
Hiking around Jenny Lake in Grand Teton National Park and watching Old Faithful Geyser in Yellowstone National Park.
ST. ANTHONY, IDAHO (Week 2)
Riding ATVs on Sand Dunes in St. Anthony.
GLACIER NATIONAL PARK (Week 3)
Driving along “Going-to-the-Sun-Road” in Glacier National Park.
BLACK HILLS NATIONAL FOREST (Week 4)
There’s endless wildlife, buffalo and green grass mountains! It was Pauli’s favorite spot! TIP: it’s great to have a good pair of binoculars to look at wildlife. The ATN BINOX 4k is perfect for this! It has day and night mode as well as HD snapshot for looking at wildlife day and night.
This trip was all about having fun with together as a family. We wanted it to feel special for the kids so we brought bags for them that were very personalized…we filled them with their own headlamps, bug spray, change of clothes, etc. We loved just letting loose with the kids! We even bought custom shirts with fun messages on them that the kids found hilarious.
If you’ve ever considered taking an RV trip with your family…stop thinking about it and just do it! Time is precious and we wanted to do this trip while our kids were still young and think that we are still cool! To get the most out of your trip, make sure you have the right setup…buy/rent from an RV dealer that has great customer service. Before you go on your big trip, do a test run close to home to practice all your hookups like water, sewage, power, etc. Last but not lease, bring lots of quarters! Yes, you read that right…you’ll need quarters to do laundry and go through carwashes since your vehicle is inevitably going to get very dirty from all of your adventures.
Don’t miss out! Catch up on all of our RV trip activities below.
You can find our trip planning resource from this week (week 4) here.
Follow more of our RV adventure on instagram (@WadeWorksCreative, @ChipWade, #WadesGoWest) and Facebook (@WadeWorksCreative and @ChipWadeDesign).
Watch this week’s Fox and Friends segment here.