Friday, July 17, 2015

Hart Ranch-Part III

PART_1435286503513_20150625_180534(Jan) Our final two weeks at Hart Ranch just flew by with lots of walking, Mini-Golf and Pegs & Jokers with our buddies Duane and Betty.  Duane was a Joker magnet one night and the guys won 2-1 but on our last night of play the girls nabbed all three games.  Duane was the winner on our front nine of Mini Golf; Jan took the last night with a surprising hole in one.

IMG_20150704_174445699_HDRThe 4th of July is celebrated  with a decorated golf cart parade for adults in the morning and a kids Bicycle parade in the afternoon.  It was a sizzling hot day but both of the parades had lots of entries and were fun to watch. That evening Betty and Duane invited us to join their family Bar-B-Q.  It was very nice meeting the family members that we have heard so much about.

A couple of days later the four us went up to Mount Rushmore to hike to the Sculpture’s Studiounnamed on the grounds. It was a lovely hike through the forest beneath the monument and there were many story boards about each of the Presidents featured on Mt. Rushmore and wonderful views of the Presidents. The Sculptor’s Studio was very interesting and had the original casts, created by Gutzon Borgland, that the crew worked with as a scale model for the monument. We also went to the Monument Museum to watch a movie on the monument’s creation. It really is a beautiful, amazing place! The fun continued that day with a picnic lunch at Horsethief Lake. This picturesque little lake is near Mt. Rushmore.

unnamed (2)Our friends Bobbie and Jim were in town on the 9th so they came out to visit Hart Ranch.  We had such a hoot talking about old times with them and some of the fun shared adventures we’ve had. Since Bobbie & I both have a July Birthday we celebrated with cake after lunch and then went to Lintz Brother’s Pizza in Hermosa for dinner that IMG_20150709_173900327evening. Here’s Bobbie with her number on her head so the server could find her to deliver her order!  The pizza was wonderful and we had such a good time visiting and laughing with Bobbie and Jim. So glad they could stop by for a visit.

The Birthday celebrations continued when Betty & Duane took us for Ice Cream Sundaes on Saturday afternoon followed by three fun games of Pegs & Jokers, grilled burgers and an evening stroll around the Ranch.  The next day we we nt into Rapid City for a car show. There was also live music at the Main Street Square.IMG_20150712_110219951 The Singers were okay but watching the kids run through the water spouts at the Square was the real entertainment; such pure joy on their faces!

IMG_20150712_203540204_HDRAll too soon our time in South Dakota came to an end.  We had to say good-bye to our good friends and lovely Hart Ranch.  Duane sent us off with hugs & travel popcorn and Betty & I had a few tears along with the laughs and hugs. It’s been a wonderful time here with our good buddies!

Thursday, July 2, 2015

Hart Ranch–Part II

P7020003(Jan) We have a membership at Hart Ranch which allows us to stay on a FHU site for 21 days and then for the next 9 days you can either move out of the park or move down to the Meadowlands. Affectionately called ‘the Penalty Box’ the narrower, graveled Meadowlands’ lots cost more but only have water & electric but no sewer. We have just finished our 9 days stay at Site #16 in the ‘Penalty Box’ and have now moved up to Site #365. It’s a wonderful site facing north with a beautiful tree for morning shade. We are here for four days and then will finish our stay here at Hart Ranch on Site 134.

While we’ve been here at the Ranch, we are once again doing lots of walking! The paved streets offer a great place to reach our goal of 10,000 steps each day. Most mornings friends Betty & Duane and Chuck & I go out for a walk and often times get in moreIMG_20150627_155540087_HDR steps in the evening.

Our weather has turned hot with less thunderstorm activity than the first several weeks here. The creeks and lakes are still at flood stage in many places but are starting to recede. We were driving through Hill City several weeks ago when it flooded there and this past Saturday Betty & Duane and Chuck & I drove up to lake Sheridan which is quite high and Lake Pactola which is definitely at a high stage and rising. Spring Creek which runs past Hart Ranch has been out of it’s banks in places. Here are some pictures.

IMG_20150606_124443665Hill City IMG_20150606_125005746Spring Creek P6270052Lake Pactola
IMG_20150606_124505299 IMG_20150626_095141605 P6270053

P6290066Hart Ranch sponsored a Singing Camp for ages 9-22 last week with a Sing Off at the end of the week. The Down Home Family from Nashville worked with the kids all week to prepare them for their performances. We went on Friday night to hear them sing; some were good, some were amazing! We went back on Saturday night to the Down Home Family Concert. Much of their work is original with many country classic mixed in. They are very good and we enjoyed their performance.

Sunday night our friends Ed & Jan arrived in our area. We had a great visit over Happy Hour and then we made an impromptu grilled dinner featuring the Hatch Chilis that Ed & Jan brought. Yummy! The following day the six of us headed to Stockade Lake so the guys could fish.  And fish and catch they did!  The girls mostly walked and visited in the shade! From there we drove to Sylvan Lake to do the mile hike around the lake. It was a gorgeous day! Our trip home took us through Hill City and dinner at the Alpine Inn. Their dinner Menu consists of 5 items; a large Filet Mignon, a IMG_20150701_150321380small Filet Mignon, a Vegetarian entrĂ©e and 2 children’s selections. We all had Filet. Very Good! We sure enjoyed our visit with Ed & Jan this week.

Yesterday Betty & Duane and Chuck & I headed north so the guys could do a little more fishing at Orman Reservoir near Belle Fourche.  Betty & I brought our computers along and found a shady, breezy shelter house to work on our photo books while the guys were out. Alas, this time there were no fish so we enjoyed the picnic lunch we had brought along. We drove through the town of Belle Fourche on our way home and got to IMG_20150701_145429201Main Street just in time for a Longhorn Cattle drive that was to IMG_20150701_150454569take place in conjunction with their annual rodeo. So Fun! We drove through beautiful Spearfish Canyon on our way south and then stopped for dinner in Deadwood at Kevin Costner’s Midnight Star Casino. We ate at Diamond Lil’s surrounded by photos, posters and costume’s from Costner’s movies. The food was good and the setting was really fun and interesting.

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