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  #1  
Old 05-29-2007, 05:01 PM
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ScottSchmidt ScottSchmidt is offline
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Default City Slickers Visit South Dakota

My wife and I have wanted for many years to go out to our friendís ranch in South Dakota for what I now call the annual "Branding and Beer Fest". There was drinking, swearing and spitting and the men were even worse at times. With the RV-10 we could now cut the 10-12 hour drive from Salt Lake City down to 2 hours and 50 minutes. The town we headed for was Bison, South Dakota. Population was around 400 (I think). This year there were 6 High School graduates according to the local Sunday paper. Our friends Danny and Kelly are both from Bison but live in Salt Lake now. My wife works with Kelly and I've worked with Danny for 8 years. We have been great friends for many years and we were finally going to see their hometown.

We packed our clothes early Saturday morning and headed for the airport around 7:30am. We were in the air about 15 minutes after 8am climbing up over the mountains with the Chelton's flight plan going from KBTF to Devil's Tower, then Danny's family ranch, then Kelly's, and finally 6V5(Bison, SD). The flight over had a little rain that flight service didn't tell me about but it was nothing major. Once we were about 1/4 the way across Wyoming the skies went clear. We were averaging 210mph with a tail wind making great time. Wyoming really is a nice state with great mountains. As we approached Gillette WY, there were open pit coal mines everywhere then the country started to rise and it became very green around Devils Tower. About 20 miles before Devils Tower a nice layer of clouds set in over the ground at 1000 ft agl. This was northeastern WY. and it was beautiful and green.





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RV-10 N104XP (1380 Hours)
RV-12 N321UT (Sold)

Last edited by ScottSchmidt : 05-29-2007 at 11:04 PM.
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  #2  
Old 05-29-2007, 05:01 PM
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ScottSchmidt ScottSchmidt is offline
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Default City Slickers Visit South Dakota

A few miles past Devil's Tower, I saw a nice airport, golf course and town. It was Hewlitt WY. It looked like a fun place to fly to or ride motorcycles to someday. I've heard there are some big party's there during the week of Sturgis.



About 80nm further and we were flying over the ranch's. Again it was green and the rolling hills were much nicer than I had expected. We made a couple of passes over the houses to let someone know we had arrived and Uncle Rod picked us up at the airport.





The town of Bison, SD.


The town of Bison has just repaved the runway and taxi way and it is in great shape but they haven't put the tiedowns back in yet. They were all marked with paint where they were going so we just pushed it back into the grass and I finally had a chance to use my "CLAW" tie downs. They sure worked great.

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Salt Lake City, UT

RV-10 N104XP (1380 Hours)
RV-12 N321UT (Sold)

Last edited by ScottSchmidt : 05-29-2007 at 11:04 PM.
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  #3  
Old 05-29-2007, 05:02 PM
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ScottSchmidt ScottSchmidt is offline
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Default City Slickers Visit South Dakota

After landing, I thought I had better get some fuel before since we were going to leave the next day (Sunday) around noon and no one may be around. I tried calling the number I had from my airnav.com print out but no answer. So Rod told us to hop in the car and we will head for the local bar. That makes perfect sense, bar = aviation fuel. The bar in Bison is the switch board for the city. We walked into the bar where Rhonda started calling the bowling alley looking for so and so's wife, not there. We then tried another ranch where we found the wife but the husband was at anotherís ranch. She then gave me the number "4738". OK, I thought there must have been more to that number. I first asked for the area code, and there was an immediate response of "224". She then took off so I thought that must be the whole number. I gave the number a call and the fuel was going to be there in 10 minutes. Apparently a few years ago Bison went from a 4 digit phone number to 7 digits. The town was not happy with that.

Here is something else you need to know about Bison, bring plenty of cash. They only take cash for fuel there. As he was filling me up (of course there was no ground) I had to quickly calculate that I could only afford 21 gallons of gas with the $100 I had on me. No problem, that gave me 40 gallons total which would get me down the road to another airport tomorrow.

We arrived at the ranch just a little too late for the branding. They were all coming back in on their horses getting ready for lunch. It was probably a good thing too because I would have just got in the way and would have made a fool of myself. Just so all you guys know for future reference, you don't use the word "lasso", or "chaps". You say "Rope" and you pronounce chaps,"Shaps". That will at least keep you from looking like a complete city boy or girl.

By 2:00 pm we had all moved from the house down to the barn, which is actually a cowboy fraternity house. You had two options for beverages, Bud or Coors Light. Don't even think about asking for a Corona unless you want to be roped and tied to the only phone pole.

Everyone was a blast to hang out with and talk to. We really enjoy their parents and they know how to cook. We had deep fried Turkeys, beef tips were awesome, and the spread of other food was enough to feed an army. The weather was perfect with no wind and clear blue skies. What a great day. After lunch, we got in the back of a truck to go look for two colts that were recently born. One was born three weeks ago and the other 1 day ago. They own thousands of acres but Justin knew where they were earlier that day and we went right too them. With about 8 of us in the back of the truck we were having a blast just bouncing our way across the green fields up and down hills, making our own road. We looked like a tourist bus with all our cameras when the colts came closer to the truck because of the oats we brought. It was fun to watch the colts as they stayed glued to the side of their mother.

Guitar shaped porch




Annie on her horse after branding.


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Salt Lake City, UT

RV-10 N104XP (1380 Hours)
RV-12 N321UT (Sold)

Last edited by ScottSchmidt : 05-29-2007 at 11:05 PM.
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Old 05-29-2007, 05:03 PM
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Default City Slickers Visit South Dakota




3 week old colt


1 day old colt


Happy horses in the green fields.
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Salt Lake City, UT

RV-10 N104XP (1380 Hours)
RV-12 N321UT (Sold)

Last edited by ScottSchmidt : 05-29-2007 at 11:06 PM.
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Old 05-29-2007, 05:03 PM
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ScottSchmidt ScottSchmidt is offline
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Default City Slickers Visit South Dakota

After lunch and the ranch expedition to see the colts, everyone picked a duck for the annual duck race and we headed to the river. It was nice to see that even in Bison South Dakota they conserve fuel and have a public transit system. The only complaints they have apparently is a slippery floor and dirty shoes.




We walked to the river and came across this giant snapping turtle lying on the banks. It was about 2 feet long. They were estimating it at 40 - 50 years old. He just sat there and watched us take pictures.


We took about 25-30 ducks and had 2 heat races and one final race. The top three from the two heat races would then race in the final for the big prize. The first heat was the rubber duck race and the second heat was the open/unlimited race where anything goes. I didn't even know about this race and therefore did not have a Lycoming powered duck to enter.
In the first heat I placed 2nd! Alright, all I have to do is apply a little more oil to my duck to decrease the boundary layer and drag and I should have this in the bag. In the final race, as they rounded the corner I had a 30 rubber ducky lead which was cut to about 20 due to the kids throwing rocks at it. But even with the slow down, I placed first and won a huge bag of quarters.



Catching the rubber ducks


Grand Prize Winner!!
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Salt Lake City, UT

RV-10 N104XP (1380 Hours)
RV-12 N321UT (Sold)

Last edited by ScottSchmidt : 05-29-2007 at 11:07 PM.
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  #6  
Old 05-29-2007, 05:04 PM
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ScottSchmidt ScottSchmidt is offline
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Default City Slickers Visit South Dakota

I took the winnings and we had another game. We laid out a blue tarp and threw the whole bag of quarters into the middle and watched the kids grab as many as their hands could hold. Pretty entertaining.



What a great day that was. When the sun went down, the guitars came out and Waylon and Willie and the boys were played all night long. We drove 18 miles over to Danny's parents ranch where we stayed for the night.

The next morning, we woke up had home-made cinnamon roles and then took the 4-wheelers out to shoot guns and see the ranch. They actually have a 3000 ft. strip on their ranch. They fly a Bellanca Scout out of it but it was a little too rough for the RV right now but with a little work it could be in great shape. I have a new Beretta Storm that I had never shot so we headed for the wood pile and shot away. We rode and rode and rode and never left their property.



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RV-10 N104XP (1380 Hours)
RV-12 N321UT (Sold)

Last edited by ScottSchmidt : 05-29-2007 at 11:08 PM.
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Old 05-29-2007, 05:04 PM
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ScottSchmidt ScottSchmidt is offline
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Default City Slickers Visit South Dakota

We left around 2 PM to head back to Salt Lake. On our way back I decided to divert to Sturgis for fuel. The Black Hills were really nice to fly over. It is easy to see why this is such a popular motorcycling area. We will be back for sure on our bikes sometime soon.

Filling up at Sturgis


Sturgis and The Black Hills




We did all that in less than 36 hours thanks again to the RV-10. We did almost 1200 miles in 6.5 hours. I now have to return next year to defend my rubber duck race title. What a great life they have out there.
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Last edited by ScottSchmidt : 05-29-2007 at 11:08 PM.
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  #8  
Old 05-29-2007, 05:34 PM
the_other_dougreeves the_other_dougreeves is offline
 
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Great trip write-up! Makes me want to fly up to SoDak right now. Well, maybe...
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  #9  
Old 05-29-2007, 07:10 PM
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Scott Will Scott Will is offline
 
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Great writeup! When I grow up I want to be just like you - taking all these cool trips in the RV.

The air looks soooooo pure and fresh out there. Ohh well, back to the lovely smog that drapes ATL.
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  #10  
Old 05-29-2007, 07:31 PM
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n5lp n5lp is offline
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[quote=ScottSchmidt]
...We made a couple of passes over the houses to let someone know we had arrived and Uncle Rod picked us up at the airport.



It looks like maybe there is an airstrip at the ranch. Bottom right up toward the center?
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