Labor Day weekend took me to South Dakota, with a kindred spirit and high expectations. What surprised me most about the state was the geological and cultural variety. The Black Hills, Badlands, array of beautiful lakes, prairies and sand hills kept me engaged throughout the drive.
I am planning to post more in-depth about my trip to SoDak, but wanted to give a glimpse into this glorious land through a photo essay.
Here are the 16 most interesting and awe-inspiring shots from my trip that I'm sure will make you plan a visit! It is Mount Rushmore's 75th anniversary, afterall.
1. Foggy downtown Deadwood resulted in some eerie vibes in this historic old west town.
2. A pop of color spotted in Hot Springs.
3. Buffaloes hugging the highway.
4. Colorful stripes accentuate the Badlands' Mars-like appearance.
5. Conflicted mountain goats spotted in Badlands National Park before a storm.
6. The streets of downtown Rapid City, also known as The City of Presidents, are characterized by bronze statues of each POTUS.
7. Driving into fog in the Black Hills, accompanied by raindrops.
8. This pink stucco theatre in Hot Springs was begging me to watch a movie.
9. Buffaloes on the highway horizon.
10. Mount Rushmore looks happy to celebrate its 75th birthday.
11. A distant house gets lost among the fog cloud.
12. Colorful and charming Keystone, tucked into the Hills neighboring Mount Rushmore.
13. Inspiring art in Art Alley, Rapid City.
14. Friendly Wall Drug welcomes you to park here.
15. Dilapidated old buildings in mysterious Deadwood.
16. Another turquoise antique finding a home in Hot Springs.
Have you been to South Dakota? I'd love to hear your experiences and favorite places! Tag @erika4reals on Twitter.