Saturday, August 21, 2010

North Dakota on the Map – Bully!

We were actually in North Dakota in 2005, but we flew here – so that doesn’t count!  This state has been the one gaping hole in our map for a couple years now, so we made a point to route our travels this way so we could finish the map.

 

Whenever we spoke to fellow RVers about the missing N Dakota, we normally got sympathy and the acknowledgement that ‘there’s nothing there!.’  We were beginning to wonder if N Dakota actually existed, there were so many fellow RVers who had been everywhere BUT here.  Then we started to hear, “Oh – except for Roosevelt Nat’l Park, that’s awesome.”  So, we planned a stay at Roosevelt Nat’l Park and made reservations (got the last spot!) at Medora Campground. 

We pulled in about 3 pm and took a look at the posters on the wall of the office and noticed ‘Bully!’ a one-man play about Theodore Roosevelt.  It only plays on Friday and Monday at 4 pm.  This was Friday – let’s go!  We parked, plugged in and took off, and we’re so glad we did.  It was a wonderful performance that really brought the man to life with all his energy, intelligence, and caring.  Jim has often been mistaken for TR – so I couldn’t resist taking his picture with the man himself – actually the actor

How full-of-life that man was.  Makes me want to read a book about Teddy Roosevelt.  I’ll have to search on the Kindle and see what I can find. 

Next we took the drive thru the park … a 36 mile scenic drive with several opportunities for walks and overlooks.

 

 

We also saw some wildlife.  Both small …

and LARGE …

So, this morning, we could put North Dakota on the map.  You must sleep in a state before it can legally be claimed on your travel map!  I figure that Jim did all the driving so I let him have the honors.

Now what?  Are we done?  Or do we just start all over again?  Oh yes, I know Alaska still needs to be done.  We don’t have any plans for RVing there any time soon.  We are going to take the Alaska cruise this Fall.  That will probably be enough for us.  I lived in Alaska as a kid.  My family drove the Alcan highway 5 times.  It is extraordinarily wild and beautiful … but I don’t have a burning desire to RV there.  I *would* like to recreate my family’s RV trip thru Mexico and Guatemala.

There is NO WAY we’re done.  I feel like we’re just getting started.  I see so many places on the map that we are going by and I’d like to stay a while.  I have a count somewhere – but I think we’re only about halfway thru the National Parks.  And, then there are the rails to trails bike rides, and the kayaking places, and the observatories, and the wineries, and the fish hatcheries, and the …

6 comments:

Anonymous said...

You mentioned looking for a book about Teddy Roosevelt. I just finished "The Big Burn: Teddy Roosevelt and the Fire that Saved America" by Timothy Egan. It is about this country's largest forest fire in August 1910, but it is also about Teddy Roosevelt's role in setting aside public land. I did not appreciate how unpopular that was at the time. It was fascinating reading.

Karen and Al said...

Congratulations on making it to ND. My husband was born there and has family, so we will probably go there one day in the RV. So far, we've marked a whole 2 states off our list.

Sandybee said...

You need to read 'Mornings on Horseback,' by David McCullough. My husband and I listened to it as an audiobook. It's read by Edward Hermann. It's a very well written biography of T Roosevelt. Fair warning: once you read/listen to one of McCullough's books, you will want to read them all. His books absolutely bring history to life!

Kathy and Robert said...

Congratulations, map complete!
I'm glad you mentioned that you have to spend the night in a state to be able to claim the sticker! Who knew? (probably everyone but me...)Sure do learn a lot from y'all! K

David Cross said...

Lynn and I found the International Peace Garden to be very beautiful when we were there at the start of a trip to Churchill, Manatoba to see the polar bears a couple of years ago.

Diane said...

Congrats! There's always more to see...the other half of the state unseen on the first visit, or visiting different states in different seasons...just keep exploring and you'll find more and more exciting things and places!