Sunday, September 14, 2014

Back to Reality

Well, the winter wonderland is all but gone today…just some residual drifts under the trees.  It’s still beautiful, though.  

But back to reality, which today means high temperatures of around 60, with expected overnight lows in the mid-30s (much better than this morning’s chilly 27 degrees), beautiful blue skies and a soft breeze.  Not bad!

We’re missing our friends Dean and Mary Lou and Tom and Carolyn who left several days ago, as well as Jay and Anita, who pulled out just in time to avoid the snow (at least the Black Hills snow).  They were headed east, so we’re not sure how the weather was at their destination.  Here is a picture of them and one of the 7 cats who share their RV home.  (A friend of theirs reportedly said when she dies she wants to come back as one of Jay and Anita’s furry feline friends!)

Jay, who calls himself an "itinerant geek" and Anita, who is an on-line university educator, spent quite a bit of their time in Custer biking sections of the 109-mile-long Mickelson Trail on their recumbent trikes.  The trail stretches from Edgemont in the south through Custer and Hill City to Lead on the north end, and provides stunning vistas along the way.  Jay and Anita’s trikes are different than those I had seen.  They have two wheels on the front instead of the back, and a special power booster than can kick in if the road is too steep.  It may be time for me to look into replacing my bike (which I never ride because it’s not comfortable) with one of these!  I didn’t get a photo of Jay and Anita on their trikes, but maybe they will see this post and send me one.

We also shared a great meal with Jay and Anita at the Alpine Inn in Hill City.  The Inn has a great filet mignon special every evening, and of course we had to follow it up with a couple of fantastic desserts.

This is a meal we have shared in the past with friends Pat and Mike, Dale and Mark, and Gregg, who unfortunately were not able to come to Custer this year.  We miss them all and want them to know they were remembered as we chowed down on our traditional feast.

We have taken a few drives through Custer State Park.  We always see something, including this massive bison bull grazing beside the road.  

However, this was the first time we ever saw Mirriam's Turkeys holding up traffic to beg for a handout.  It is common to see a dozen cars stopped to look at a bison, pronghorn or bighorn sheep.  However, turkeys are another matter.  These two jakes hang out at the same spot in the park, and when cars stop they come running over with their recognizable “pert-pert” calls to see if anyone will toss them a treat.  

We’ve also continued to fish a couple of times a week.  I was thrilled to bring in this 16-inch rainbow trout.  It was big enough to feed John and me twice!

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