Next year, around Memorial Day, I might be driving from St. Louis to Mt. Rushmore or thereabouts. I want to stay on as many two-lane roads as I can, and kind of follow the Missouri River up to about the Nebraska-South Dakota line, then head west, eventually going through the Badlands and to Rapid City.
There’s no real purpose for this. I just like solitary trips and like driving through rural areas. I’ve always wanted to see the Great Plains. I’ll probably try to get my hands on a convertible so I can get good and sunburned on the trip.
Other than rural desolation, what should I take time out to see? If there’s nothing but corn and cows along the way, that’s fine, but if there’s something I should make sure to take a look at, let me know. I’d be interested in anything related to history, westward expansion, wagon trails, Lewis and Clark, ghost towns, etc.
I hope see as little of the interstate as possible. If there’s some can’t-miss site that I have to get on the interstate to see, I might make an exception. There’s a Minuteman missile silo museum not too far from Rapid City. I’ll probably try to see that on the way back. It’s right on I90, so I will probably leave Rapid City in I90, going far enough to go by there, then get back on side roads.
I’d kind of like to see Chimney Rock on the way there, but it looks like it would add a good day to the drive. I might still do it, though. I’m hoping to keep the trip to five days.