It costs an arm and a leg to fly into South Dakota. But that’s okay. My preferred mode of transport is auto. And it’s only a few hours from the busy, well-established Minneapolis, Minnesota. But with lofty goals for my day one, I hauled butt past a few roadside attractions I might have considered otherwise. World’s Largest Ball of Twine would be second fiddle to the wealth of attractions in South Dakota’s Black Hills.
So South Dakota has two main cities: Sioux Falls, near the eastern border, and Rapid City, near the western border. The western region of the state offers much more, in my humble opinion. But I did stop at Sanaas Gourmet Mediterranean in downtown Sioux Falls, South Dakota for a bite. I think I was here before–in 1999 when I drove cross country. I think.
I had the Sweet Potato Fatayer, a vegan version of what is traditionally a Middle Eastern meat pie. And a quinoa salad and hummus on the side.
A tiny church for little prayers.
A sucker for a series of billboards over a large stretch of interstate, I stopped at 1880 Town.
Burning daylight, I was off to Badlands National Park, trying to squeeze in a few of the shorter hikes before the 8:12 sunset. Of course, I also wanted to see the sun go down over the striated, layered expanse of geologic deposits. The striking landscape was formed tens of millions of years ago then eroded by the Cheyenne River flowing from the Black Hills.