Day 199 Kadoka SD
Oct 28, 2008
|Day 199 Tuesday 28th October Kadoka SD
We had another chilly nite. Lowest outside temp was -5.4C (approx 22F) and 0C inside the RV (that’s bloody freezzzzzing you know), thank goodness the thermals were doing their job, yep even I succumbed to wearing them last nite, we were nice and toasty in bed. Man it was sure cold outside, even at lunch time I think it was still hovering around the freezing mark, i.e. 0C.
After breakfast we headed out of our parking spot in the park only to see 4-5 deer nearby in the cemetery across the road. I quickly grabbed the camera and snapped a few shots, they ran parallel to the road at first, Steve was very cautious just incase they decided to hop the fence in front of us, but this was not to be, as they headed for the gate at the end of the fence and then crossed the road in front of us and off into the woods.
We stocked up on a few rations in town, plus found somewhere to fill the water tank up, and then we were on our way once more, heading west of the I90. The terrain for the majority of the day was extremely flat; still the corn was in abundance, we also saw a few more cattle today. This must be a rather drought-stricken state, as everything is very browned off; the farmers must do it tough out here too.
We stopped to have a look at a car museum in Murdo. There were over 250 vehicles dating back to 1900 to the 1970’s. The collection commenced in 1954 and has been added to ever since. The owner of the business was an avid collector or rare and exotic American cars. He was a collector and not a restorer of vehicles as most of them appeared to be in their original state. The cars are housed in a number of old tin sheds rather than show-rooms. When Steve enquired about the deterioration of the cars, he was told that in the South Dakota area there was very little humidity and rust was not a big issue.
Some of the interesting cars included, The General Lee of Dukes of Hazard fame. Apparently 17 cars were made for the show and due to all the crashes etc; this is the only one that has survived. Steve’s favourite was the 1968 “Shelby” Ford Mustang GT500 – of course it was red so it could go faster. There were also a number of vintage motorbikes on display as well, with the main attraction being Elvis Presley’s 1976 1200cc Harley Davidson.
There wasn’t much rhyme or reason to the collection which also included tractors, trucks, boat motors/engines, static engines and heaps of other junk, which was all very amusing.
We stopped some 22 miles west of Murdo to look at a fairly authentic “1880 Town”. The owner of this town (Richard Hullinger) bought the property, consisting of some 90 odd acres back in 1972 with the hope of constructing an “old town”. Some years later a film maker came to town and needed a film set, depicting the 1880 era. This film set was in a nearby down – when winter set in that year the film producer called it quits and stopped production, but told Richard he could keep the “main street set” which he then moved it onto his 90 acre property.
Over the years the “1880 Town” as it is known, has grown with many other building being added, such as the Dakota Hotel which was moved from nearby Draper, it was built in 1910. The white church at the top of the main street, St Stephan’s Church was built in 1915. So in other words, even though this town never actually existed as a town in its own right, they have tried to keep some historical value in what has been collected and moved to this current site. The types of buildings were a Bank, school, black smith, hotel, two churches, wagon-wheel carpenter, town hall etc.
Another claim to fame in this 1880 Town and surround areas, is that Dancing with Wolves was filmed here. Upstairs in their 14-sided round barn, which also doubles as their shop/ticket & greeting area, they have much memorabilia from this film, including the mechanical bison which we saw moving its head – clothing that was worn, loads of behind the scenes pictures on the walls, tee-pee used in the movie etc.
All the buildings had genuine artefacts of the era making the whole experience more realistic.
Tonite we went in search of somewhere to free camp, no Wal Marts anywhere out here. We ended up down this dirt road a couple of mile off the I90. We set up camp on the side of the road, ate dinner and was about to clean up, when there was a very loud bang on the door. Fruit-loops, you could have scraped me off the ceiling. We had already pulled down all the blinds as it was dark by this stage, hence didn’t see anyone approaching the RV. Steve opened up the blind on the door to find the Deputy Sheriff shinning a torch in his face. He then opened the door. This nice policeman told us very politely that one of the locals had contacted him about “out-of-towners” on the side of the road and they were a bit concerned with strangers nearby. End of story, he advised us where to park for the nite, which was a couple of miles further down the road. Just as well we did what he said, because he was waiting there for us to arrive.
Guess what, we are only a couple of hundred meters from the Interstate 90 – its going to be a noisy nite I’d reckon. He also told us he’d advise the Highway Patrol we were here and that he’d OK it. Gosh the plot thickens!!!!
Our journey so far has taken us over 25,000 miles (40,500kms) and tomorrow will be 200 days on the road.