Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Montana Vacation Odyssey

My families' idea of an ideal vacation involved beautiful natural settings and very few people.  We like to experience the real places of the U.S., see the nation's great National Parks, and maybe learn something along the way.  So this year, we embarked on a 10 day Montana Vacation Odyssey.

Traveling:  Day 1

We had the family car loaded to the gills and we were on the road at 5:02 a.m.  The kids are great travelers.  They each, carefully pack a "fun bag" loaded with books, electronics, DVD players, notebooks, etc.  I put in a bag of snacks (I refuse to buy snacks at gas stations--can you say "waste of money.")  and a refillable water bottle.  I was armed with 5 books ready to go. 

We drove from Illinois through Wisconsin, Minnesota, and into South Dakota.  We stopped for the night at Badlands National park, arriving at 5:45 p.m.  We like to camp most of our vacations, it keeps us outside in nature (making Hubby happy) and is quite cheap (keeping me happy).  Over the years, we have become quite efficient and can have the tent out, pitched, and sleeping bags unrolled in probably the same amount of time it takes to check into a hotel.  We covered 850 miles in a little over 12 hours. 
After pitching our tent, we ate dinner at the Wagon Wheel at Interior, South Dakota just North of the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation. 

After sitting for so long in the car, the kids had some major steam to burn off.  Hubby and kids scrambled like mountain goats up and down the rocks.  We enjoyed some beautiful views and got our blood pumping.


It was a long day, but we were already in South Dakota.  The sunset from our campsite was gorgeous!

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