Tuesday, August 18, 2015

The Badlands, South Dakota

How do you picture the Badlands of South Dakota? Maybe hot, dry, dusty, even baron was my vision, more like Death Valley

The Badlands however rises out of the prairie floor mounting into pointed peaks and valleys. 

In valleys amongst its peaks are green grassy spots with sunflowers.

The visitor’s road twists up and through different shapes. The Badlands over the years developed massive earth layers like those in Utah but not as bright with the red and white strips. Valleys with large farms reach to the feet of the Badland mounts

Pentacle Peak is the highest point in the park and can be seen for miles before reaching it


All types of animals survive in this desert climate; like this spider I found in the grass near one of the overlooks.

I don’t know if Peggy was going to fly or just point out the vastness of the Badlands or just pointing to one of her favorite pointed peaks again.

There are paths that lead out to the edge of the points and this couple had found a quiet moment to share.

Water had cut moguls in the one of the valleys and water was running from an earlier shower on the day we viewed them. Vine weed was in bloom in one of the valleys.


On our return trip the peaks appeared higher with less red colors on the Westside of the park.
As we scoped out the roads for Kemosby (our RV) climb the next day we could see the southern farmlands and the vast rolling plains. Everything looked green, even the thistle were blooming along with other plants.
Last of the day we made it down to the Prairie Grassland Museum to see what life might have been like in the farm lands of South Dakota in the early 1900’s.

Safe travels through your Badlands,

George McGaughey (with Peggy & Coco)
Happy Feet RV Travels   

Tuesday, August 11, 2015

South Dakota, Custer and the Black Hills

On the road again!  Our first stop after leaving Denver was Lusk, Wyoming. It is a small town on Hwy 85 on our route to Custer, SD. The week before a six foot of water destroyed the bridge on Hwy 85. Kemosabe got us through the rough detour.  We reached Wheels West RV campground, in Custer and unpacked. This was the same valley where Custer camped on his epic journey through the Black Hills.  Gold was first discovered here in 1874. In town we were met by a Buffalo on every corner and a strange assortment of characters wondering down Main Street. 

On our second day we backtracked to the small town of Hot Springs. There we enjoyed the swimming and hot tubs. Stopping in the parking lot of United Church we saw an unusual pastor named Clint Walker.

On our way back, Peggy spotted a monument of bicycles in the town of Pringle.


The next day we ventured to the Crazy Horse Monument. We were greeted with a line of motor cycles being the Sturgis rally was a week away. Lakota Chief Henry Standing Bear chose sculptress’s Korczak Ziolkowski to carve the Memorial in 1948. Korczak married Ruth Ross on Thanksgiving Day 1950. There at the monument they raised 10 children, five girls and five boys. Many of the children and grandchildren still work on the project following in their father and mother’s footsteps of completing the monument.


On day four we tour the Wind Cave National Park. Taking a 1-hour tour, this was the least strenuous with only 150 steps. There we viewed samples of beautiful cave formations of boxwork, cave popcorn, and flowstone.  It was the seventh U.S. National Park and the first cave to be designated as a national park by Teddy Roosevelt in 1903.


Moving on to the next trip was through Custer State Park. There we viewed buffalo, wild donkeys  and prairie dogs.

On our fifth day we took the trip everyone comes to the Black Hills to see the famous Mount Rushmore.  Taking the back road we saw more buffalo.  Driving through an old railroad tunnel we saw the sight of figure heads in the distance. There on the granite mountain top were the carvings of Washington, Jefferson, Roosevelt and Lincoln.

On our last day we visited the monument of the first white women in the Black hills.  She lived with her husband teaching school at the nearby fort. They had come to the valley searching for gold.  In the spring of 1876 they were evicted by the army.  They returned after Custer’s demise at the Little Big Horn in Wyoming.

On to the Bad Lands and more buffalo
Happy Feet RV Traveling,
George (with Peggy & Coco)

Saturday, July 25, 2015

Visiting Denver again

Sunset caught us at our go to stop place on our way into Denver.

 We were reminded of the high levels of rain both coming and going. In Trinidad we met with rain and in Ft Collins, Colorado said goodbye with rain.

Our month in Denver was very busy.  After pulling the last of our possessions out of storage we are now fully ‘stuffless’ with only Kemosabe as our home-on-wheels. 
In the process of cleaning out the storage unit we came across old photos of us in our youth.
We also caught up with old friends at three of the nine Unity Churches in the Denver area.  We also helped my brother and wife put on a garage sale so they could move to Sun City West, Arizona.  We will meet them for Christmas while we winter in Tucson, AZ.
  On the 4th we experienced the fireworks in Northglenn with my niece Shoshanna, granddaughter Makayla and Chelli my daughter-in-law.  The fireworks were the best we’ve seen with their artful presentation. We had two family reunions, one with Peggy’s family and one with my family. Sean, Chelli, Makayla, Peggy and I watched the Rockies win 5-3 on a very wet rain delay night (two called delays).
The great news is that I’m finally published. “The Mouse in the House at Christmas” and is available through our Facebook (site: The Mouse in the House) or on Amazon. We finally make it out of Denver after thirty days of work and happy to be back on the road again.  We enjoyed South Dakota and all the sites around Rapid City and are now in Bismark, ND, trying to stay out of trouble!

Stay dry and safe with your travels, 

Happy Feet RV Travels

George (with Peggy & Coco)

Tuesday, March 10, 2015

Attack of the KILLER Gourds in Arizona


Attack of the Killer Gourds…coming to your town!

They will be coming in shades of purple, green, red, yellow and some will be BIG, some small, some FAT, some skinny, some funny and some unexplainable.  DO NOT, I repeat, DO NOT let them into your homes (they multiply when you aren’t looking)!


Whew, you don’t have to be afraid of the killer gourds because George and I went to the annual Gourd Festival in Casa Grande, AZ  and discovered so many things about gourds that will make you feel safe again!

 When I told George I wanted to go to the Gourd Festival I thought he wouldn’t want to go but he is a trooper and wanted to check it out.  It didn’t hurt that I mentioned there would be hot dogs and fry bread there. I really think he enjoyed the festival more than me…if that is possible.

First off, there is a very large farm in Casa Grande - Wuertz Gourd Farms www.wuertzfarms.com that grows gourds and sells them to all the crazy people who paint, carve, chip, embellish and then display them in their yards, homes and even RV’s.  Once a year they hold this festival to sell and show gourd as artistic items.
Big ones, little ones, every size and shape you can imagine!

The main attraction was the big hall that had all the entries for the prize of either a first, second and third place ribbon.
This was the Grand Prize winner for the show:

Here are some of my favorites:


Now are you still afraid of gourds or do you want to add some to your home, yard or RV?  From the many people we talked to at the festival it can become addictive to buy just one and start designing on it, which leads to more, and more and more!  Buyer beware!

Happy Travels,
Peggy (and George & Coco)