One of my all time favorite movies is My Cousin Vinny. There’s a great scene in the movie when Joe Pesci (Vinny) asks about the train next to the hotel. Well last night every two hours on the hour the train would go by our room and blow its horn. Now why the train has to blow its horn at midnight, 2a, 4a and 6a is beyond me. Fortunately I fell back asleep so it wasn’t really a problem except I kept thinking about My Cousin Vinny all night. FYI, Matt sleeps like a log and missed the whole “My Cousin Vinny Train Experience”.
This morning Matt and I had breakfast at the local diner. While we enjoyed the Starbucks in Gillette the other day, it was fun to be where the locals go although we should have bought camouflage hats to wear. What a great start to the day for our short 37 mile ride to Custer, SD. Marilyn and Linda met us at the state line as Matt and I crossed into our 5th state of the trip.
We had to do a little climbing today as we entered the Black Hill of South Dakota. It was nice to be back in the beauty of the trees and mountains. With such a short ride we were in Custer, SD by 11:15 and I have to give a special thanks to Leah and Thuria Maris (what a great name or what) at the Super 8 for letting Matt and I check in early! After putting all our gear ion the room we jumped in the swimming pool and enjoyed that instant refreshment from jumping in a cool pool when you’re hot. Our scouts Marilyn and Linda texted us that we needed to go to the Purple Pie Place for lunch. Boy, did they know what they were talking about. The lunch was good, but the pie was incredible! Matt and I both had the Bumbleberry Pie which has blueberries, blackberries, raspberries, apple, strawberries and rhubarb in it. It was one of the top three pies I’ve had (the other top two pies I’ve had our the pie Ken Mozek and I had at the farmhouse during RAGBRAI 18 years ago and the Pecan Pie my Mom makes at Thanksgiving).
Matt and I then drove up to the Jewel Caves http://www.nps.gov/jeca/index.htm which we had passed on our ride into Custer. The Jewel Caves are the 2nd longest in the world with over 170 miles of explored caves. The caves were a little disappointing as they went on forever but were not particularly beautiful (nothing like what Brenda and I saw in Southern Spain last year). We’re still glad we went and saw them, but it’s checked off the list and we don’t need to go back. We then cam e back to Custer and picked up Marilyn as Linda headed home and had a nice dinner in Custer.
Tomorrow we’re looking forward to having an off day and moving slow. We’re going to see Mt. Rushmore, the Crazy Horse Monument and go to Rapid City to pickup my good friend Ed Brown who’s going to ride with us for the next 2 weeks. Matt and I have had no injuries so far and we still look forward to riding our bikes each day but we’re happy to give our bodies a day of rest. So here’s the pictures from today:
Leaving the Sundowner Inn – Newcastle, WY