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sideroad travel with teens

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sideroad travel with teens

Heading through SD to Nebraska we'd like to find some great places to stay, eat, and to insect collect.We don't wish to travel on Freeway. We need to know where we can mine, metal detect, swim, fish, and experience the state with half grown boys. We CWP carry so we need heads up on all bans please.

South Dakota
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1. Re: sideroad travel with teens

When you say headed through SD to Nebr., what route do you plan on taking? Are you going from north to south in the eastern or western half of the state? Diagonally? It would help to know your starting point and final destination as it takes six hours to drive across the state and we are talking a large geographical area. This will help us give you more info. Thanks!

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2. Re: sideroad travel with teens

We shall choose the route that suits our interests but north to south from west to east eventually.

6 hours or several days, we want to see and experience the best of SD but not get stuck in too many tourist lines.

Edited: 11 April 2013, 06:44
South Dakota
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3. Re: sideroad travel with teens

Can't help you with metal detecting and insect collecting. I've never seen anyone talk about that on here, but you never know. Starting in the NE corner of the state, if you are on Hwy 10, there is Roy Lake State Park. You could spend the night at the lodge there. Roy Lake is nothing spectacular, but people use it for recreational purposes such as swimming and fishing. South of there on Hwy 25 is Fort Sisseton, which is a group of restored fort buildings with costumed guides. This is also in a state park. The whole NE corner of the state is packed with glacial lakes. Most are kind of grungy for swimming due to run off from agriculture, but they are good for fishing. Pickerel Lake is SE of Fort Sisseton and is one of the cleaner ones for swimming. There are state parks with swim beaches on the E and W sides of Pickerel. I can't tell you the name of the roads you need to reach Pickerel. I'd suggest purchasing a state hwy map. After Pickerel, if you return to Hwy 25 you can stay on that down to US Hwy 14. This will take you all the way to Pierre, which is on Lake Oahe, a wide spot in the Missouri River. I'd suggest the Club House Suites or Days Inn in Pierre. Lake Oahe would offer more fishing and water recreation opportunities. From Pierre, you can take 83 down to I-90. I know you didn't care for interstates, but this is the best road to reach the Badlands, which are beautiful and not to be missed for any outdoor enthusiast. From the Badlands, you can continue on I-90 to the Black Hills. The most central locations for lodging there are Hill City and Keystone. The DE is more knowledgeable about things in this area and someone else can tell you more about gold panning, if this is what you mean by mining. I would not worry about any major tourist lines. Nowhere in South Dakota, are you going to run into the types of crowds that you would see at Disney World, for example. Mt. Rushmore will be busy during peak summer tourist season, but nothing unmanageable.

I didn't include a few of what I consider the more interesting tourist attractions because they are off your route and/or may not appeal to teen boys. Those would be the Redlin Art Center in Watertown (free), the Laura Ingalls Wilder historic sites in DeSmet, Palisades State Park and the Jesse James jump site in Garretson and Falls Park in Sioux Falls. The Corn Palace in Mitchell is also interesting, but only takes about ten minutes to see from the outside.

South Dakota
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4. Re: sideroad travel with teens

Oops. Now I've reread your post and noticed you said west to east, so my initial suggestions are the opposite of what you'd want to do. There's not much to see in far NW South Dakota, so I would head on down to the Black Hills, visit the sights there and then see the Badlands. I would personally stick to I-90 even though you don't like interstates because things are pretty desolate west of the Missouri. Gas stations, restaurants, lodging and emergency services and towns in general are few and far between. You could stop in Mitchell at the Corn Palace. If you stay on I-90, when you reach Sioux Falls, you could detour up to Palisades State Park in Garretson and the previously mentioned Jesse James site (I think it's called Devil's Gulch). Sioux Falls has the Outdoor Campus, which I would normally not recommend as a big tourist attraction, but if you like exploring things outdoors, that is what they're all about. There's also a butterfly house near the Outdoor Campus for insect observation. It's small and expensive. The Outdoor Campus is free. Definitely see Falls Park. There aren't many lakes in the SE part of the state. You could swing down to Yankton and do some recreational activities on Lewis and Clark Lake (another widened part of the Missouri). From Yankton, there is a bridge to cross the Missouri on Hwy 81 which will lead you right into Nebraska. There's also the Adams Homestead and Nature Preserve in the SE part of the state for immersing yourself in the outdoors.

Edited: 11 April 2013, 19:37
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5. Re: sideroad travel with teens

Great info on SD. I appreciate your details and honest rating of the activities you've listed. Very helpful! I will add your activity and road suggestions to our plan. Thanks

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6. Re: sideroad travel with teens

Do you have an address for this -There's also a butterfly house near the Outdoor Campus for insect observation- so that I might add it to the trip plan. I am finding several locations but I can't confirm they are correct. Thanks (:

South Dakota
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7. Re: sideroad travel with teens

No, I don't have an exact address. If you find the Outdoor Campus in Sioux Falls, the butterfly house is literally right across the parking lot. You wouldn't even have to move your car. Both are located in Sertoma Park. Just google and you should be able to find it.

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8. Re: sideroad travel with teens

Ok, will do. Thanks again

Fargo, ND
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9. Re: sideroad travel with teens

Hi, you might be done with your trip already, but if you're stopping in Sioux Falls and need a quick rest stop, check out Falls Park. It's a beautiful park - nice spot to relax and have a picnic lunch. One of my favorite parks EVER. Maybe a 1-2 hour stop at most; the boys will enjoy the waterfall.

10. Re: sideroad travel with teens

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