Sunday, June 27, 2021

Turning East

 Before leaving Bellevue I had a nice lunch with my sister. She was not in the best of moods as I insisted that she must take her walker (on the advice of my brother and her nurses). But, she did smile for our selfie!

There next morning we turned our wheels toward the east. 

We stopped in Bozeman, Montana one evening. My sons had talked about it in the past and I wanted to do more than buzz by on the Interstate. We rode our bikes into town and along a nice "rails to trails" bike path. We stopped at Schnees, on the advice of our Stock Broker. He told us it was a great store for hiking boots and sport clothes. I gave him a tough time for not warning me in advance that they also sold guns! The Mister found a shotgun he liked, but decided he didn't really need one! Phew! After a bit to eat and a stroll along Main Street we returned to the rig and continued our trek the next day. Bozeman was a nice break in the mundane life of trekking across country.

Our next fun stop was a visit to Jewel Cave, Crazy Horse and Mount Rushmore; all in one day! And then, to top it off, we went to a chuckwagon dinner and show near the campground. As we left South Dakota we swung down into the Badlands and circled through the amazing landscape: green grass prairie as far as the eye can see on one side of the highway and canyons of gray, pink and yellow hues of eroded sandstone on the other. Such a contrast. 

We planned a stop at Soldier Creek Winery near Fort Dodge, Iowa. On our way through acres and acres of alfalfa, corn and occasional pig farms I tried to catch as many "barn quilts" as I could. Painting quilt block designs on barns appears to have begun in 2001, but it is reminiscent of the hex signs found on Pennsylvania Dutch barns that began in the 17th century. 

Our stop at the winery was idyllic. Soldier Creek Winery is a member of the Harvest Hosts programs. Campers may stay at participant's farms or businesses for a nominal fee at most, and can take tours, taste goods and purchase wares offered by the farms or businesses. Although we have belonged to the program for years we have not stayed at any of the venues until this trip as they often are not convenient to the major travel routes. I am so glad that we went a bit out of our way. The owners have 160 acres, most planted in corn. Their son went to an agricultural program after high school and upon his return told his dad that they should plant grapes. His daughter was also in an agricultural program and went on for an advanced degree in viticulture. She is now the wine maker. They make 15 or more different wines. We participated in a wine tasting, enjoyed their Friday night music, bought a few bottles of wine and continued on our way!

We are now near Dayton, Ohio. Tomorrow is the beginning of a new chapter. We are picking up a Winnebago Navion 24D that the Mister found online. We love having the smaller motor coach, but the Atlas we are currently using is just a bit too snug with all of us. So, we head into the dealer tomorrow, go through our orientation for the new coach and we will each have a coach to drive from here to the end of our journey! His and Hers I've heard of everything!


  1. We were up in that part of the Dakotas in 2019, before Covid. Mt Rushmore was undergoing some renovations and we could not get up that second section of paving. Have they finished that? I liked Crazy Horse better anyway and found the Badlands fascinating. We shared that part of our trip with Geoff's sister and her husband so it was double fun. Did you go to the Prairie Homestead on the way in to the Badlands?

  2. We found downtown Bozeman fun also! Fun to see Tucker and Gypsy! Have a good summer!!


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