Man! I hit the Wall, SD

Today began with all of the riders thinking the ride would total around 95 miles. Due to some fortuitous construction, we were able to trim about 5 miles from the total by taking the highway for part of the trip. But, there is much that transpired between our arrival at about 90 miles, and the outset of our ride.

The weather to start off the day was slightly chilly, but we weren’t confronted by the expected headwind. The hills and landscape provided for enjoyable and beautiful riding-as we approached Wall, we were beginning to see signs of the Badlands, located to the Southwest of Wall. In fact, we were able to ride to the entrance and take a photo with some beautiful bluffs in the background, which was a wonderful opportunity for us.

After we finished taking our photo at the entrance to the park, we headed back for Wall via I-90. My group consisting of Matt, Ben, Praveen and myself elected to ride on the interstate instead of through the park, saving some time and mileage. We ended up riding in echelon form, exchanging the lead every 5 miles or so, pushing 23 miles per hour for the last 20 miles. We were flying! Even though we hadn’t traveled toward the park, we still enjoyed some beautiful scenery to our left side. Upon arrival in Wall, we went to the Lutheran Church which is providing our shelter, and spoke with the minister. We then went to Wall’s most famous attraction, Wall Drug. This is a curious piece of Americana, and provided several hours of entertainment for us. Not only do they have a shopping mall, chapel, fudge shop, camping and outfitting store, and ice cream bar, but they also have a classic art gallery with some beautiful oil paintings depicting scenery from the wild west.

Dinner calls-Matt and Jay made some delicious pizzas. Until next time, John

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