Family Fun Activities

Fun Things to do with Your Family

State Trips

The Road Across South Dakota to Mount Rushmore – Pit Stops

The road to Mount Rushmore is a long one.  You must drive clear across the state of South Dakota to get to Mount Rushmore and all the beautiful sights in that area.  The last major town in the eastern part of the state is Sioux Falls.  Then it is a 5 hour ride out west to all the other attractions.

The ride west is easy in the sense that it is just one road I-90, you cannot get lost.  But the ride is also a difficult one in the sense that it is just one road with hardly any other traffic on it and sometimes can be hypnotizing.  Luckily, there are alot of attractions right off the road that are just begging for your tourist dollars.  Here is where your research will really pay off because not all the attractions are worth pulling over for.  Here is what we found listed in exit order (heading west) off of I-90.

Sioux Falls exit 390 – This is a cute town and worth spending a day or so here.  We decided to check it out on our way back.

Sculpture Park exit 374 – You can see the pyramid, animal head with horns form the road, however, we were not ready for a pit stop so this is not a exit we visited.  This park has a number of interesting sculptures that you can walk around and take pictures of.

The Corn Palace exit 332 – This is gymnasium that they turn into a corn selling haven.  You can purchase every type of corn item known to man. My husband pointed out that many of the items for sell were not even made in South Dakota, so he was done with this pit stop at this point.  The positives of this stop were they had interesting pictures made out of corn cob mosaics, they had clean restrooms and they had delicious flavored popcorn balls that we all enjoyed on the long ride to Deadwood.  In our opinion, this place was only worth the stop if you had to take a bathroom break.

Time Change – At about exit 180 you will experience a time zone change, you have now gained an hour of time.

1880 Town exit 170 – We did not stop here or even know about it until we passed it on the road.  It looked like a movie set town of the old west. I think if my kids were younger this would have been a great stop for us.

Missile Silo National Historic Site exit 131 – This site was established by Congress in 1999 to preserve the missile sites listed below.  The best thing to do is stop here for a short video on the cold war, get some informational material and move on to the 2 sites below.  The information I had received prior to the trip was not very clear so we did not understand that there were 3 different sites to visit.  We hit this exit on the way home (returning East) and there was no way we were turning back around to visit the missile and launch control.  So we missed it, but now you don’t have to!

Delta 01 exit 127 – A launch control facility.

Delta 09 exit 116 – A missile Silo.

Wall Drug exit 109 – There are a million signs begging you to stop here, kind of like “South of the Border” between North and South Carolina.  It is just as touristy too.  I thought it was fun to break up the trip.  My husband was not a fan of this stop.  There are plenty of cheap touristy things to purchase, if you are into that.


Note:  The Post picture is of the Corn Mosiacs on the side of the corn palace.


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