Today the lakes shores are far less concerned with commerce and slave smuggling and more to do with relaxation.

Today the lake’s shores are far less concerned with commerce and slave smuggling and more to do with relaxation.

 

From Lake Erie we drove up to Lodington on the east shore of Lake Michigan. After an uncomfortable night in the back of the car, we boarded the morning ferry bound for Manitowoc, Wisconsen...........and Yes that is steam rising above Marcus' head!

From Lake Erie we drove up to Lodington on the east shore of Lake Michigan. After an uncomfortable night in the back of the car, we boarded the morning ferry bound for Manitowoc, Wisconsin………..and Yes, that is steam rising above Marcus’ head!

 

Leaving port with a view of our 'Badger's' sister ship tied up. They were both built in 1952 and Badger is the last surviving steam powered ferry in the northern hemisphere.....there is one other in NZ. Her sister is kept alongside for spares. I felt a bit sad for her:(

Leaving port with a view of our ‘Badger’s’ sister ship tied up. They were both built in 1952 and Badger is the last surviving steam powered ferry in the northern hemisphere…..there is one other in NZ. Her sister is kept alongside for spares. I felt a bit sad for her:(

 

We picked the rainiest day, but there was worse to come, so it was probably just as well!

We picked the rainiest day, but there was worse to come, so it was probably just as well!

 

Built in my birth year and commissioned in Marcus's!

Built in my birth year and commissioned in Marcus’s!

 

Leaving Lodington. Waves can build to 15ft on the lake. The week before they had to cancel a crossing.....

Leaving Lodington. Waves can build to 15ft on the lake. The week before they had to cancel a crossing…..

.......Yiiiikes! Not really. Just slight of hand with the camera!

…….Yiiiikes!
Not really. Just slight of hand with the camera!

 

We weren't quite sure to go once we left the ferry, but having spotted a town named after us, there was no question about it...... we were Hayward bound!

We weren’t quite sure to go once we left the ferry, but having spotted a town named after us, there was no question about it…… we were Hayward bound!

 

Having strolled around the town, we found a tranquil site, by the river and on the edge of the town. Hayward makes its money from tourism, but puts on at least two big events in the year. A national fishing competition and a national logging competition!

Having strolled around the town, we found a tranquil site, by the river and on the edge of the town. Hayward makes its money from tourism, but puts on at least two big events in the year. A national fishing competition and a national logging competition!

 

Hayward at the centre of his world!

Hayward at the centre of his world!

 

The Logging competition has its own purpose built arena with designated logging skill sections: as far as I could gather these include tree felling, log hauling, log rafting and log walking. Good to see Hayward keeping the skills alive!

The Logging competition has its own purpose built arena with designated logging skill sections: as far as I could gather these include tree felling, log hauling, log rafting, log walking and of course the slippery pole thingy. Good to see Hayward keeping the skills alive!

The following morning we were up, packed up and the gas strut mended on the tail gate of the car, all by 7.30……..yes you’ve guessed it…..all our battery driven watches were flat AND we’d crossed another time zone!! so off we went for breakfast at the best Mc Donalds we’ve ever seen, and we have certainly seen a fair few on this trip! …..A log fire, rocking chairs, comfy sofas and the interior all done in log cabin style aaand they had good Wifi!!

With T shirts purchased printed with Hayward, we were ready to move on towards Minnesota’s capital, Minneapolis. Being a Saturday night, we knew campsites might be busy, but usually they can squeeze a small tent in…..not tonight though! We made our way to a Truck Stop and were given a space next to the kitchen and the bins and after a trip into town, we settled down to a smelly night, but with the benefit of a great shower in the morning. Sleeping in the car entails shifting our bags into the front seats, blowing up the air bed and laying it on top of the three storage boxes and ice box and the back seat. Marcus then lies diagonally across the bed and I fit into any space left!

We then had to cross South Dakota on our way to Mount Rushmore in the Black Hills. This scenery didn't change for hour upon hour. We did come across a small town called Miller and stopped at a roadside shack for an ice cream. There we met Brett, who runs the ice cream parlour and take away for 6 months and lives the other 6 months in Honduras on the island of Roatan......we said we will probably see him there in 2019!

We then had to cross South Dakota on our way to Mount Rushmore in the Black Hills.

This scenery didn’t change for hour upon hour. We did come across a small town called Miller and stopped at a roadside shack for an ice cream. There we met Brett, who runs the ice cream parlor and take away for 6 months and lives the other 6 months in Honduras on the island of Roatan……we said we will probably see him there in 2019!

We traveled on to Pierre, the capital city of S Dakota and camped just below a dam. It was the day of the solar eclipse, but we were a little too far north to see anything more than twilight. That day there was a severe thunderstorm alert for the campsite so, rather than stay and get drenched, we took off in the car for Piere and some lunch. We have never seen such a torrential, monsoon like, tempest like, biblical deluge! When the hail stones started, we made for cover and drove under a petrol station forecourt, before we were smitten with frogs and locusts !!!……this was the 22nd of August and the same day that my Mum fell and broke her hip! Having received the news, it put a dampener on our journey to Mt Rushmore, but the news from home, by the end of the day was looking a little more hopeful.

En Route to Rushmore, we got sucked into the advertising for Wall Drug. What was it, where was it and what was it?.....we were to find out!

En Route to Rushmore, we got sucked into the advertising for Wall Drug. What was it? Where was it? and Why was it?…..we were to find out!

 

Set next to the bluff that rises of this high plain, is the small town if Wall. Naming places in the US is simple.....you either call the town after where you came from in the old country or use a description!

Set next to the bluff that rises off this high plain, is the small town if Wall. Naming places in the US is simple…..you either call the town after where you came from in the old country or use a description!

 

Wall Drug is a drugstore that set up in the late 1800s. the new road bringing settlers and prospectors west, ran slightly to the north of Wall. Things were hard for Wall Drug, until the pharmacist's wife hit on the idea of offering free iced water for travelers who detoured. The bills boards are now up as far away as Minneapolis and they certainly worked on us! This is Marcus enjoying his free water!

Wall Drug is a drugstore that was set up in the late 1800s. The new road, bringing settlers and prospectors west, runs slightly to the north of Wall. Things were hard for Wall Drug, until the pharmacist’s wife hit on the idea of offering free iced water for travelers who made the detour to Wall and sent her husband and son out with hand painted signs to put up on the highway. The bill boards are now up as far away as Minneapolis and they certainly worked on us! This is Marcus enjoying his free water!

 

Wall Drug is an emporium par excellance! There is something for everyone and they are ready to take you money at every turn.

Wall Drug is an emporium par excellance! There is something for everyone and they are ready to take you money at every turn.

 

The famous last poker game of Wild Bill Hicock!

The famous last poker game of Wild Bill Hicock! Who’s that in the background?

 

It had to be done!

It had to be done!

 

At last we arrived at Mount Rushmore and managed to find a free dispersed campsite right behind the illustrious gentlemen!

At last we arrived at Mount Rushmore and managed to find a free dispersed campsite right behind the illustrious gentlemen!

 

Behind Mount Rushmore.

Behind Mount Rushmore.

Our home for the night. This site was too small for the big tent, so our 'Little Blue' came out again.

Our home for the night. This site was too small for the big tent, so our ‘Little Blue’ came out again.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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