Today's itinerary requires multiple times of getting on and off the coach and walking to and from the different location sites including museums, meals, and the hotel. Walking up to two miles today just on sidewalks, even ground and some with sight incline; boardwalks; and over 170 steps on the 1/2 mile Presidential Trail at Mount Rushmore (walking the trail is optional).
Breakfast is at the hotel. Self-serve style: Fruit, breakfast cereals, breakfast meat/protein, eggs, toast, pastries, hot tea, and coffee. Additional beverages for purchase are available.
"Rock Talk" lecture by a local Geologist, covering the areas in which we will travel on our Road Scholar adventure. Mount Rushmore National Memorial: The majestic 60-foot faces of four U.S. presidents gaze out over South Dakota’s Black Hills. Recognized worldwide, they stand as a symbol of American democracy. This national treasure tells the story of the United States’ rich history, rugged determination and lasting achievement. From the Grandview Terrace, the views are spectacular of George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, Theodore Roosevelt and Abraham Lincoln. Walk the half-mile Presidential Trail that loops along the base of the mountain. Discover why the four presidents were selected, see how the mountain was carved and learn about sculptor Gutzon Borglum and the workers who brought Mount Rushmore to life. Crazy Horse Memorial: A fifth granite face has emerged in the Black Hills. The colossal Crazy Horse mountain carving is now in progress. Crazy Horse is the largest sculptural undertaking ever – on a scale with the Egyptian pyramids. When completed, it will tower 563 feet high, 641 feet long and be carved in the round. Watch history in the making as drilling and blasting continue on the rest of the sculpture. In 1939, Lakota Chief Henry Standing Bear invited sculptor Korczak Ziolkowski to carve an Indian memorial in the Black Hills. Though Korczak died in 1982, the sculptor’s family continues the non-profit project. Enjoy an Expert- led tour with one of Crazy Horse's local guides! The guide will lead us around the complex and offer commentary before we have some time to have a look around on our own.
Enjoy a soup and sandwich lunch with dessert, ice tea and coffee at a local Hot Springs restaurant, Woolly's. Additional beverages available for purchase.
Ride in the coach, to The Mammoth Site. Discover the Mammoths and experience America’s greatest Ice Age Treasure at the Mammoth Site in Hot Springs, SD. The Mammoth site, with a 36,000 square foot visitor center, is an in-situ (bones left as found) Ice Age museum containing the largest concentration of Columbian and Woolly Mammoths found in their primary context in the world. Imagine walking the edges of a 26,000-year-old sinkhole where mammoths, bears, loins, and wolves once walked. The Muller Exhibit Hall features fascinating exhibits: a full-sized Columbian mammoth replica, a walk-in bone shelter, and skeletons of now-extinct carnivores; the giant short-faced bear and the American lion. Get a glimpse of the scientific work conducted downstairs in the state of the art lab. The Mammoth Site has been featured on Discovery Channel, CBS and NBC Evening News, Today Show, BBC Television programs, and in many magazines, including National Geographic. The site has co-hosted international symposiums and conferences, as well as published scientific Quaternary research books. Depart The Mammoth Site for a scenic drive through a portion of Custer State Park which covers 71,000 acres, making it one of the largest state parks in the nation. Watch for bison, one of the largest publicly owned bison herds in the country numbering between 1,000 to 1,200, pronghorn antelope, mule and whitetail deer, burros, coyotes, wild turkeys, elk, mountain goats, bighorn sheep and golden eagles.
Approximately 6:30 p.m. at the hotel, we’ll enjoy a buffet dinner featuring an entrée, salad, vegetable, and dessert with beverage choices of water, decaf coffee, and ice tea. Additional beverages are available for purchase.
Free time to enjoy the pool or hot tub or just relax.