Mount Rushmore National Heritage Site
After visiting Badlands National Park (and finding our way to the infamous Wall Drug – do you know about this place??) we had to visit Mount Rushmore. Mount Rushmore National Memorial is the massive sculpture of four US presidents. The sculpture is carved into the side of Mount Rushmore in the Black Hills of South Dakota. The faces on the hill are depicted in many movies and pop culture (which is how we even know of them). The carving was completed in 1941 by Lincoln Borglum, the son of Gutzon Borglum who started the sculpture in 1927. They chose these four presidents who, in their perspective, represented the most important events in US history at that point. I wonder if the choice of presidents would be different in this day and age…
The site offers a small interactive museum to view the sculpture up close. But instead of paying the $10 to park and walk right up to the sculpture in the mountain we decided to take the scenic route! Needles Highway and Iron Mountain Road are two routes that were built and created to experience the most of the natural landscape. Needles Highway takes you through Custer State Park where you drive around sharp turns and through rock tunnels. Iron Mountain Road goes from Custer State Park to Mount Rushmore National Memorial. The highlight for us was driving through the granite tunnels which so perfectly frame the Presidents faces across the valley.
Have you been to Mount Rushmore or only seen it in a movie? My most vivid recollection of it in the movies is Richie Rich’s own version of it called “Mount Richmore”.