Driving east from Rapid City towards the Badlands, our first stop, of course, was Wall, South Dakota - home of the world renowned, eponymous Wall Drug - where else?
With the Black Hills receding behind us,
The landscape began to level off.
Soon we spotted our first sign for the mecca of the Dakotas, Wall Drug.
Free ice water. Yes, free ice water brings in the thirsty travellers every time.
No pilgrim goes unrewarded.
Do they believe in marriage equality? Hmmm...
There were occasional interlopers - Johnny-come-lately wannabe signs:
But Wall Drug billboards ruled the roadside.
They were making us hungry.
As we got closer our anticipation grew.
The suspense was almost unbearable.
Would Wall Drug live up to our wildest fantasies?
We turned the corner rounding the silos,
There it was, the shining Drug Store on the plains - the one, the only,
T H E Wall Drug - they were glad we'd made it!
and we were very glad to be there,
We browsed the extensive bobble head department,
wandered down aisle after aisle of collectible treasures including the jackalope department,
sampled the excellent maple donuts,
fancied the Western wear,
and studied the memorabilia - including the founder and his son http://www.walldrug.com/t-history.aspx
We paused in the chapel where we prayed for a bargain.
We could have lingered so much, much longer,
Amidst the friendly folk in wonderous Wall Drug,
But we had to get to the Badlands before the late-afternoon light faded.
We headed south out of Wall.
The Badlands beckoned in the distance.
Across a sea of grass.
We arrived at the overlook where the Badlands begin.
The sea of grass came to an abrupt end -
proven by Peter who declining my polite request to take just one more little step backwards for the photo...