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  • jahnerdavid

That's a wrap! Great times at home!

May 22 - 26

Went back to Rapid from the cabin on Saturday and had a pretty quiet day. The weather was marginal today – first couple of less than stellar weather I have had for the entire trip. Ordered Thai food for supper Saturday evening and really enjoyed it. Who knew Rapid City could have so much variety?! It was a fun event.

Sunday it happened – bad weather with severe thunderstorms, tornadoes, and hail. Thankfully, my car does not appear to have sustained any damage but won’t know for sure until Monday. I was talking to Scott at the time and went from saying that the hail was not too big to saying, “they’re quarter sized now”. The roof on Kay’s garage was covered in hail but fortunately there was not any visible damage.

Had a nice breakfast and lunch on Sunday, since it was Bill’s birthday. We had (what else) caramel rolls from Colonial House for breakfast and Olive Garden for lunch. Jill and Mom joined in on the fun and we were able to take them both home during a break between storms.

The sky Monday was truly azure blue, but the wind was fierce (25 – 30mph), so that meant a change in plans – no hiking when it is that windy. I drove around town and up Skyline Drive to Dinosaur Park. The scenery was great even if the wind was fierce. From there I drove up Grandview Drive to get a bird’s eye view of South Junior High (now South Middle School), since I learned they will be demolishing the current school and building a new facility. From there I went to my former elementary school. Aside from new playground equipment, the building looks about the same.

Took some pictures of the new innovation and makerspace building located at East Boulevard and Main established by some graduates of South Dakota Tech who want to keep talent and entrepreneurs in the state. I’ve provided a link in the “Resources” tab in case you want to find out more about this project. The building is certainly one of the most beautiful in town in my opinion. Went to visit Mom and picked up snacks for the long drive at Family Fare and then went back to Kay and Bill’s.

Thankfully Tuesday the wind was not as fierce as Monday, so it was possible for me to drive south on US16 to the Stratobowl trail. It’s an easy walk from the highway – and there’s even a parking lot now at the trailhead! The Stratobowl is famous because it is the site where the first balloon to reach the stratosphere (13.7 miles above the earth’s surfaced) was launched back in 1935 – at that time it was a world record. Ever since then this natural “bowl” has been called the Stratobowl. I had not been on that road/trail for at least 45 years! The last time I remember going to the Stratobowl was when a local radio station (KKLS) was having a scavenger hunt to find some hidden prize (do not remember how much), and my sister and I drove out on the road (which was then open to vehicles and is now the trail). The smell of the pine trees and the sound of the ponderosas in the wind were definite highlights on the walk to and from the bowl.

Met MaryJo Arnold for lunch at Tally’s Silver Spoon on 6th and St. Joe – the restaurant has been around since the 1930’s. It is across the street from the iconic Alex Johnson Hotel. Went to see Mom after lunch and then met Lynn for an early dinner – just the two of us. It was wonderful. I cannot even begin to count how many times we drove across the state together from Sioux Falls to Rapid during our years at Augustana. Back in the mid-1980’s the speed limit was 55mph (it’s now 80mph) so it took at least 6 hours to traverse those 353 miles.

Last day in Rapid was cool and cloudy. I spent most of the morning doing laundry and packing. Went to visit Mom in the afternoon and then had dinner delivered. Getting up early Thursday morning to hit the road after a great week and a half in the area.

Mileage update:

Miles driven during time in Rapid City and surrounding area: 614.2

Total so far: 2,554.7 miles

Check it out:

Be sure to check out the “Resources” page if you are interested in learning more about some of the things mentioned in the blog! The photo album for Part 2 in Rapid City can be found here: . Thanks for reading/viewing!

Photo gallery:

Top row (L to R): Last day in Rapid: with Mom; spectacular sunrise

2nd row (L to R): Stratobowl trail; Stratobowl; Hotel Alex Johnson

3rd row (L to R): Mary Jo Arnold and me; views of Rapid City from Skyline Drive

4th row (L to R): Jill and me; West Rapid from Skyline Drive; Innovation/makerspace building

5th row (L to R): Mom and me; Dinosaur Park on Skyline Drive; Innovation/makerspace building


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