In which our hero and heroines' children decide they've seen enough 'bus-a-lows'*, and that it is in fact, time to go home.
For the first couple dozen wild buffalos Elise was enchanted. After the next couple dozen she was less so. And after we'd been driving through buffalo country for an hour we heard impassioned pleas from the backseat to go home.
"Time na home? Time na go home?"
We bolstered moral with a lunch break.
The buffalo were a prelude to Mt. Rushmore National Park. There are four national and state parks all clumped together in that incredibly scenic part of the country.
Mt. Rushmore Park was lovely - despite being hit hard by the vile spruce beetle. The hills looked like it was fall, because of all the spruce bug's devastation. The Park staff were so worried about the beetle's effect on the pines they sprayed all of the trees around the carving so as to preserve the traditional view.
The park had a great 1 1/2 mile walk around the base of the cliff, where you could see the carvings from different vantage points, read about the subjects (i.e. George Washington, Abraham Licoln, etc.) and the artist who was in charge of the project.
Despite already having walked several miles that morning, up and down the Black Hills, Elise was a trooper. She enjoyed the stairs on the trail - and firmly insisted on doing them all by herself!
Worn out, we returned to camp to recover and eat hotdogs!