Friday, May 20, 2022

Temperature 39 Degrees, Solid Cloud Cover

Black Hills Burger and Bun

South Dakota Railroad Museum

Holy snow flake Batman its snowing!

Yesterday we watched the temperature plummet from the 50’s to the low 30’s in no more than an hour. Than, imagine my surprise – or should I say shock – when I looked outside and it was snowing. That’s right – snowing. OK, it was only a snow shower but it lasted for hours. Then this morning the forecast indicated we would be getting an inch of snow. Fortunately, they were dead wrong. But come on now isn’t this the month of May.

But wait, it isn’t over yet. Tonight and tomorrow the temperatures are supposed to go into the low 20’s. Now this is getting down right ridiculous! Ms. Barbara was talking to the owner of the RV park and she stated in her seven years of ownership this is the first time in the month of May that temperatures have every gone below freezing. I wonder, should I feel honored that it waited for my appearance to take a nose dive!

Time to go into polar bear mode. I have Reflectix in all the windows. I’ve taped the bedroom window shut since it doesn’t really close tight. The kitchen slide is in since it basically has the majority of our plumbing in it. No sense having it all hang out in the wind and cold. I’ve got a trouble light in the wet bay. I’ve treated the diesel fuel with Power Service Anti-Gell recommended by Cummins. Our water lines have been disconnected and drained. Our electric heaters are out and going strong. I believe we are ready.

Enough of that stuff. Today we pulled out our winter coats and our hats and decided to just get out.

Our first stop was Custer. It’s a typical, small tourist town. If you blink, you’ll miss it.

Specifically, this is where we were headed. It was a recommendation from a local and we decided to give it a try.

I thought that this sign was really unique. And speaking of unique. . .

They also had some nice glass light globes and stained glass windows.

But I bet what you really want to know about is the food. In a word it was scrumptious. We had fried pickles which were oh so good. As for our burgers, they were absolute winners. I savored each and every morsel from beginning to end. Want a burger? This is the place to go.

But we weren’t done for the day yet. Off to Hill City we went.

This was to be our first stop. However, they were closed since staff was in training today. This was not looking good.

Next stop, and it was open. This is the South Dakota State Railroad Museum. It is located next to the Black Hills Central Depot. It is a small museum but we soon discovered that it has some very interesting exhibits.

Over and over we’ve learned that the railroads built a region, a city, or even a state. We’ve also learned that all too often over time the majority of the rail lines have been abandoned. It makes one wonder why? And makes me ask would we be better off today as a country with a stronger rail system in place?

Graffiti actually once served a very practical purpose. It was used to note arrival and departure times, contents of cars and their weight.

I always thought it was a station. Now I know what it really is – a depot.

The depot agent must have been a very busy individual.

I believe I’ll stick with my cell phone regardless of the problems I sometimes have with it.

They had a two wall mural time line from which I learned some new things today. For instance:

The Time Zones we know today are a result of the railroad. Before they went into effect it was hard to set a schedule for a train since times varied widely throughout America.

The handwriting appears to be on the wall as they say.

Well, I definitely learned a number of new things today which makes it a good day.

But before we go, see if you can figure out what the following is:

So, they don’t want you to sit on the Velocipede. But what is a Velocipede? I had to know. Time for Google. I discovered that it was a light, three-wheeled, self-propelled vehicle used for railroad inspection. However, with three iron wheels and an ineffective spring under the seat to absorb bumps, it soon was given the nickname boneshaker.

There were, of course, more exhibits in the museum but I hope I’ve shared with you some of the more interesting ones. It is one of those museums that I’m glad I took the time to visit but not one that I would necessarily say is a must for a bucket list. But, if you are ever in the area do give it some consideration.

OK, time to go pull out all the blankets that we an find. It’s 10 pm and the temperature is already down to 29 degrees and forecast to go lower – like around 21 or 20. Yup, once we’re back home this will definitely be a trip that we will talk and chuckle about. If we don’t freeze in place before we get there!

Thanks again for spending some time with us.  It’s always great to be able to share our story with family and friends. Comments? Feel free to share them with me. And always remember, cherish every moment of every day that God gives you and live those moments to the fullest.

Our continuing mission remains the same: to explore as many new states as possible, to seek out new acquaintances and make new friends, to boldly go where we have not been before


  1. It is really cold there! Hopefully, it will warm up soon. Very interesting post! Now why is it inaccurate to call a train depot a train station? What makes the word “station” inaccurate? My uncle (who passed away about 4 years ago at age 95) worked for the railroad in his younger days as a railroad track inspector. He always talked about it like he loved it, but I don’t believe he ever rode a velocipede. He did go all over the country as well as Canada. My dad, as a Ham radio operator, was very good with Morse Code. I remember him tapping away, but in the later years, he would use the microphone more. I think in the earlier years, the only method to communicate was the Morse Code. I learned some things from your post today – for one, Lincoln signing the Pacific Railway Act. And two, there are no railroads in South Dakota. Now, I do have to say, when I think of abandoned railroad tracks, I think, “Oh good! More bike trails!” The burger sounds delicious! I’ve never tried fried pickles. Keep having fun, and try to stay warm!


    1. We hit a low of 20 degrees last night! Thankfully, with the furnace and the heat pumps and our electric heaters and our blankets we are quite warm and comfortable. Train Station, Train Depot. I say whatever you like! Would have liked to have met your uncle and been able to sit down with him. I bet he had some very interesting stories he could tell. Hats off to your Dad, I don’t believe I could ever learn Morse Code well enough to send and receive. And your right, in the very beginning of the railroad Morse Code was the only means of communication. Fried pickles, if you ever get a chance give them a try they are really, really good. Have a great weekend.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Custer is an adorable town! The weather you are experiencing is why we postponed our trip out West from May until July. We had originally planned it for the end of May to take advantage of the Memorial Day holiday, then I discovered that the Going to the Sun road in Glacier National Park (Montana) doesn’t even open until late June/early July due to the accumulated snow. It blew my little Southern mind. When we toured the park in July, snow was still visible in some areas.😮


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