Sunday, September 7, 2008

Bear Country USA

Saturday morning we awoke to sunny skies but knew that if we wanted to see anything that we had better get going as they were calling for rain during the day. We drove about 4 1/2 miles down Hwy-16 to Bear Country USA. This is a 200 acre natural Black Hills habitat where the animals can roam freely. Being a cool day they animals were up and moving all over the place.

We saw Rocky Mountain Elk, Wild Turkey, Reindeer, Arctic Wolves, Big Horn Sheep, Rocky Mountain Goat, Black Bear, Timber Wolves (who were after the bears at times), Mountain Lions, Buffalo including a white one, Miniture Donkey. we went to the small animal exhibits where we saw river otters, porcupines, red fox, coyotes, lynx, raccoons, badgers, and the bear cubs. The cubs were all over the place and just made for a wonderful time of watching them play and frolic. I could have stayed and watched them all day.

We then took a ride down to Keystone and something was going on as traffic was backed up about 2 miles from town. We decided that we would not wait to find out what was happening. We turned around and went to the Christmas Village, just looking at all the Christmas ornaments that they have.

We decided to come back to the RV and just as we opened the door, there was a flash of lightning, a roll of thunder and the rains started. Along with the rain was some hail but now real winds. Thank goodness. This lasted about 30 minutes and then we had a little sun but mostly clouds.

At 2:30 pm it was cloudy but no rain so we decided to go and see the Chapel in the Hills. This is an exact replica of the Borgund Stavkirke located near Laerdal, Norway. When we got there the host told us that there was to be a wedding at 3:30 pm but that we could visit the chapel until then. There was a narration all about why and how they had brought the buildings from Norway and what all the meanings were in the sculpting around the doors. Very interesting. There was also a Norwegian Cabin on the grounds with many interesting pieces of furniture and living tools. This is a must see if you are in the Rapid City area.

While we were at the Chapel, the rains again started so we came on back home and enjoyed the rest of the afternoon working on uploading all the pictures I had taken for the day. Bear Country (95) Chapel in the Hills (25). I hope that you will take a look at them and enjoy as much as I am.

Until next time, Take Care.

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