Friday, October 24, 2008

Day 53, Friday, Oct 24, O'Neill, NE to Hot Springs, SD

We ended our day at Hot Springs, South Dakota, about 50 miles from Mount Rushmore.

But, we couldn't leave Nebraska without stopping here outside the town of Chadron and taking a picture of this windmill and weatherbeaten ranch building, so typical of the landscape of northwestern Nebraska.

Just before entering Valentine, Nebraska, westbound on US 20, you cross the Niobrara River, a tributary of the Missouri and designated as a "National Scenic River."

It was interesting to read about this bridge, designed by Russian immigrant Josef Sorkin. It is an arched cantilever truss bridge, connected in the center by a single pin; the only bridge of its kind in the United States. It was pronounced the "Most beautiful steel bridge of 1932." (Just trying to keep you all abreast of important historical facts).

This is 'cheezy' we know, but we had to stop and take a picture of "Big John" in the small town of Ainsworth, Nebraska.

Friday, as we resumed our travels westward on US 20 from O'Neill, Nebraska, we could see the evidence of the heavy rain that has fallen in this part of the Midwest over the past several days. Many of the huge rolled bales of hay are still in rain drenched and flooded fields as you can see in this picture taken west of O'Neill, looking off to the south.