Dan and I hadn't planned on a vacation of any kind this year so when the opportunity to go to Sturgis presented itself to Dan he was all over it! Dan and I don't see a lot of each other during the week because our schedules are opposite. I work days and he works nights. One morning I was saying good bye to him when he told me of this great opportunity. I couldn't believe it when he told me that we might have a room in Rapid City for as long as we wanted to use it during the Sturgis Rally this year. I'd like to thank Corrine from Oskie for hooking us up with the room. I know you are all thinking that we could have gone and just camped because that's part of the whole rally experience and you are right but I did that already and would rather have a warm shower and a bed to rest on at night.
On Saturday, August 2nd we headed out from our home in Johnston on our great adventure together. Dan and I have made small trips of about 400 miles together but never anything like a trip to Sturgis. We decided to start the trip by taking Highway 141. It's a very scenic road and there wasn't a lot of traffic at 6:30 am on a Saturday morning. I reminisced in my head about taking this road to Sturgis in 2004. It's funny how something sticks with you and always seems familiar even though you haven't traveled on it for a long time. We made a couple of stops along the way...one in Manning, IA at a small little Mom and Pop gas station. Ate some grub and headed back on the road until we got to Sloan, IA where we fueled up and headed down the road to Interstate 29, headed for Sioux Falls, SD. When we hit the border into South Dakota and I saw the South Dakota state line sign I threw my arms up in the air and let out a big yee haw! Dan gave me a big thumbs up...it was cute. It was wild how the wind speed changed once we got into South Dakota. If you've never traveled in South Dakota look out because it's windy.
Our next stop was at J & L Harley Davidson in Sioux Falls, SD. The dealership is right off of I - 29 and they really show a lot of hospitality to the bikers on their way to Sturgis. The one thing that stands out to me is that they have a couple nice shelters with picnic tables and they bring in local vendors to sell food during the event. The day we were there the Minnesota Pork Producers were selling Chops on a stick. After we spent a little time at the dealership we road over to fuel up at the truck stop across the street and headed out on a road that I thought was Interstate 90. Wrong!!! Well...we figured out that we had gone the wrong way and turned around and headed back to I-29 and finally found the I- 90 exit. There was a group of Vets in front of us and one guy had a huge American Flag strapped to his sissy bar. He must have been a pro at riding because I'm telling you it is windy, windy, windy out there in South Dakota. The funny thing is that we saw this guy at least 4 more times on the trip.
After the stop in Sioux Falls I can't remember if we stopped any place else to fuel up before we got to Mitchell but I'm sure we did. I was just so darn excited about being in South Dakota that I blanked out a little bit. We got to Mitchell and found our hotel which looked scary so we went down the road to see if we could find anything else. We did...rented that room and went back and cancelled the scary hotel room. Dan was pretty proud of me because I went in and canceled it myself. It's the biker chick thing that brings out the diva in a girl!! lol We rested a while and then ventured into Mitchell to find the Corn Palace. If you've never been there you should stop if given the chance. It's free and worth seeing. After the Corn Palace we checked out a couple vendors that were set up at the gas stations in Mitchell...ate at Perkins...and then headed back to the hotel to rest up for our trip to Rapid City!!!
Well...that's day 1 of our trip. Trust me...it gets more exciting once we get to the heart of it all. The little adventures along the way do add to it though.
Here are some pictures from the first day on the road.
Me by Zippy Pickle on Highway 141.
The Corn Palace in Mitchell, SD.
Dan and Me with our new buddy that we met in Mitchell outside the Corn Palace. It was funny because he didn't really have much to say!