Shortly after we finished our last day of work at Luton’s Teton Cabins, we finished our packing, hitched up and headed to the Wind River Casino in Riverton, Wyoming, about a 2 hour drive. The casino allows RV’s to overnight for free in their parking lot. (I like free!) The main reason for our fast departure was to get over the Togwotee Pas during the afternoon. At 9600 feet, it is not unusual for it to have snow or fog early in the morning, so we wanted to get ahead of the weather. We drove through snow in May, and we did not want to repeat that on our way out.
On our last day, we received another $10 in tip money, so we decided to use that as our “play money” at the casino. I enjoy playing the video poker machines, and put the $10 in a machine, and happily cashed out $200.16 after getting 4 aces! It was a nice casino, and the only one we have been to that does not serve alcohol (which was probably why it was so quiet in the casino!).
Unfortunately, we had a dead battery after just a few hours of being parked. We had put the refrigerator on propane, and that is all we were running. We think the cooling fans must draw a lot of power, because we also ended up with a high temperature alarm on the refrigerator. We were hitched up and our front hydraulic levelers were down, so we couldn’t detactch to jump start our battery. We decided to call Coach Net (the RV roadside assistance that we subscribe too) and waited for them to send a service technician. After a 90 minute wait, the technician arrived and jump-started our battery, and we were on our way. This was all free (remember, I like free!) under their service. We highly recommend that anyone with an RV, get an appropriate roadside assistance program. We use Coach Net, but have also heard good things about the Good Sam’s Roadside Assistance as well.
Once we were back on the road, we headed to Custer, South Dakota for two nights. Dan was able to reset the error code on the Norcold refrigerator, using a magnet on the back side of the refrigerator. A service technician showed him this trick when we had this error code once before.
We stopped in Custer to visit with our friends and former co-workers at Crazy Horse Memorial. We met Rudee and Margaret for dinner on Saturday night, and spent a very enjoyable 2 hours getting caught up on their lives. Rudee’s husband Phil, had to work late, so he was not able to join us. We missed seeing several other couples, who had already departed for the season. Hopefully we can catch up with them in Florida!
On Sunday, we got up early to do the 10K Volksmarch at Crazy Horse. This was my second time doing this very popular hike, and Dan’s first time. It is the only time that you can walk to the top of the mountain carving. This is a bucket list item for many people, and it is definitely worth it. It was a beautiful day, and they had over 4400 people doing the hike. Admission to Crazy Horse is waived if you bring in three cans of food for the local food pantry, and the cost of the hike itself is just $3.00. There are port-a-potties, snacks for sale and water refill stations along the route. Wouldn’t it be nice if all hikes had this along the way?!
On the way down, we ran into Adam, one of the son’s of Korczak Ziolkowski, the original sculptor of Crazy Horse. He was guarding “the armpit” as he put it. We were impressed by the progress since our last visit in 2013.
Both Phil and Rudee were working that day, so we met them later at the restaurant for dinner. We also saw Monique, one of Korczak’s daughters, and talked briefly with her about the progress over the last 3 years. It was a wonderful visit, and it was great to see many of our friends and co-workers that were still there. Monday morning we hitched up and continued on our trip back to Wisconsin.
We stopped for the night in Blue Earth, MN. The town has a nice fairground with a campground. And the cost for one night? Free! (are you detecting a theme here?). Blue Earth is a nice small town, that is home to a famous roadside attraction. The Jolly Green Giant Statue! The town is home to the Green Giant/Seneca Company. The statue is 47.5 feet, and sits on an 8 foot base. His feet are 6 feet in length, which equates to a shoe size of 78!
I am not sure why they put the viewing platform right under his legs, but we will leave the comment at that!!
But Blue Earth has a few other pieces of history. In 1917, a local man applied for a patent for his “Chocolate Dream Bar”, which was a square of ice cream, dipped in chocolate, wrapped in foil and frozen. Two men from Iowa, however, also had similar patents filed and everything ended up in litigation. After several years, the MN man sold his company to the two other men. One of the men changed the name of the bar to the “Eskimo Pie”, and the other man, Russell Stover, used his proceeds to start his own candy company. Seems both men from Iowa did very well!
Blue Earth is also the mid-point of America’s longest highway, I-90. When the interstate was completed, the East and West portions were joined together at Blue Earth. At one point, the road was paved in gold, to commemorate the occasion. These little towns hold a lot of our history!
We are currently in Wisconsin, at a surprisingly busy State Fair Park Campground. I will have a post soon (I promise it won’t take a month!) on what we are currently up to. Note: it does not involve Amazon this year!
Quote for the Day: “Nothing is a waste of time if you use the experience wisely.” – Auguste Rodin