Big Ride Update: Day 22
Day 22 we rode 96 miles from Kadoka, South Dakota to Pierre, the state capital. It was beautiful, remote country, long, rolling hills with wide golden fields and bales of hay that shimmered in the sun. The film Dances with Wolves was shot in the area. It was warm but tolerable and the wind stayed under 10 mph. We passed a town called 1880 and crossed the Bad River into Midland, then biked past the Little Brown Church on the Prairie, what looked like a motorcycle hang-out and stopped for a check-in at Hayes Roadside Park. Pierre lay at the bottom of a winding descent and we crossed the wide, blue Missouri River–it divides South Dakota into a western and eastern half– before entering the charming town of Pierre, pronounced ” pier.” We stayed at the middle school.
Gas station from 1880 town, a collection of 1880-1920 era buildings and props.
Crossing the Bad River as we enter Midland in Haakon County, South Dakota
Little brown church on the prairie
Taking a break on a hot day
Golden fields with shimmering bales of hay
Crossing the Missouri River into Pierre. The memorial bridge is named after the part-Sioux great grandfather of one of the Big Riders, Heather.
Pierre’s first school house, est 1881. With 13,000 people Pierre is the second least populous state capital. It was chosen, after great debate, when South Dakota gained statehood in 1889 because it is in the geographical center of the state.
The Capitol building
Representative Betsy Olson in front of the stallions statue by the Capitol. She kindly gave us a tour of the interior and grounds. The legislature is in session from January to March, after which calving and cropping traditionally began.
World War II memorial by the lake outside the capitol building