After the wildlife loop in Custer State Park, we drove through the tunnels towards Mount Rushmore. We didn't stop to take photos of the tunnels or of Mount Rushmore, because it was getting late in the afternoon already (we crammed a lot into some of these days), so you'll just have to deal with this photo taken out the window while Ben was driving.
Both of the girls were very excited to see Mt. Rushmore, Amelia especially so.
Megan wanted to take some photos of Mount Rushmore, so here are her shots. I like Nathaniel photobombing the first one. I had to crop and edit them because it was really bright out, but I think her second photo is really nice!
The girls did the Junior Ranger program right away. Megan is hard at work drawing a picture of our family looking at Mount Rushmore. She even drew glasses on Roosevelt and a cute beard on Lincoln. Mom helped the girls with most of the questions, because I had to head back to the car for some reason (was it to get Nathaniel's diaper changing thing? Maybe so.)
Both of them said that their favorite thing in the visitor's center was pushing the dynamite handle to make part of the rock explode. Nathaniel really liked that part, too, and must have done it ten times in a row.
Then the girls said they wanted to walk the presidential trail. Dad stayed with Nathaniel while the rest of us did the walk. There was a path down to what the girls thought was going to be a cave, but it turned out to be a little view of Mount Rushmore between two big rocks.
At one of the viewing platforms, the man next to us pointed out a cute little baby mountain goat:
In addition to seeing the immensity of the rocks that were blasted away from the mountain, you really get an interesting look up the presidents' noses from down here:
Megan had so much energy that she hopped up and down most of the stairs. I believe National Treasure 2 was also filmed on these stairs.
And we went inside the artist's studio, which had a large model of what Borglum wanted Mount Rushmore to look like. It would have been a lot of extra work to carve the mountain down to Washington's waist!
Ben took a lot of other very lovely photos of Mount Rushmore, but I am sure you all have seen it already, right?