Living in the Black Hills week 3

Posted: August 31, 2010 in TRAVEL / Gatherings
Tags: , , , , , ,

8/23 Monday

The wind storm went on through the night and my little tent barely budged. In the morning the sun came out and all the critters were running around. I had a bunch of turkeys by my tent and a couple bucks by my bike.

I did my workout and hiked to the Rosevelt Peace Tower. The tower was being repaired and it was closed off so I laid by the boarder entry to take a picture resembling my last visit with Nikki Fox. Then I got some fruit from the store and stopped into the Lead library to post a blog entry.

Kayla texted me directions to Jenny Gulch and I was on my way. I took a wrong turn through east Jenny Gulch Road and went through a forest back road and came out in the valley. I asked a local at the fish farm and got back on course. I was only about 4 miles away.

When I found the right spot it turned out to be everything Kayla described. The cliffs were right off the parking lot and it was plenty deep to dive from heights up to a 26ft. Cliff. You can also hike up to a 100ft. spot and layout nude with no one to care or even notice.

I got a nice tan while typing a bunch more and then headed back to the saloon as it got dark. I spent a few more hours playing darts with Kayla and showed her how use bit torrent before ending the night.

8/24 Tuesday

Started my day with some fruit and the usual workout and then went to the library to upload the latest pictures.

My destination for the day was Deerfield lake, 28 miles south of Lead. Along the way you go through a rest area of a village called Rockford. As I rounded the Rockford curve I spotted some old cabins and a few tents.

It was here that I met hitcher Mike and travelin Tom. Mike had lost his wife to cancer and had to sell his things to pay for the funeral. He decided to hit the road from south central Oklahoma and hitch to Wyoming to do some soul searching.

I have extra admiration for the hitchers because it is such a difficult journey at times. Mike shared his path with me and then another tenter named Tom came over to hang. Tom was a Florida shark fisher and Keystone SD penny smasher before taking his tent to the woods.

It was nice to hang out and chat about travels for awhile in this miny tent city. I told Mike to find his way to Venice Beach for January and maybe I would see him there.

I made it through Deerfield Valley to the lake around 5p. It was yet another beautiful location with only one boat and a second fisherman within shouting distance. I hiked around and had the company of several mule deer.

I found a nice rock to sit and write and eat on but there was a bunch of red ants hinting that I was imposing so my stay was brief. The lake was 2 feet low so you could see a bunch of gold pyrite dust shinning in the ore filled beach. I picked a few cool rocks and then jumped on the bike.

The road to Hill City was full of mule deer. I was dodging them every few miles. I was at mile 34,716 on the spedometer and got $6 of gas at $2.74/gal. Here.

It was a cold dark final few miles to Deadwood as the temps dropped below 50. Once back I stopped in to Holiday Express to check messages and met Curtis E from Springfield MO. He liked my stories and asked me to visit when in the area.

I then closed the night out with some blues music at the 10.

8/25 Wednesday

Did some extra lifting and less yoga today to make sure I made it to the Saloon 10 tourney. Luckily I got in the game and won the $19 tourney which paid me $100.

I decided to go get some glasses with my winnings and then went to play the $22+ Cadillac Jacks tourney. I got 6th out of 19 and then went to the service station to warm up my lunch in the microwave.

With a short afternoon I decided to pick a close location to explore. That location would be Terry Peak just 5 miles from Lead. I found a good cliff over looking the mine diggers and wrote a bunch more until dark.

I stopped back at the library at 7 to post pictures and found out that my cousin in TX I was visiting this winter had lost his battle with cancer. By the time I was done spreading my love the librarian wanted to close so I would have to return in the morning to finish posting my second week blog.

I ended the evening by writing at Mustang Sally’s and visiting with Kayla. She told me about a place by Rockerville called Hippy Hole. It was 50 miles from Deadwood so I would try to find it on my way out of the hills.

The classic Chevy Impala group lined up the street this night to kick off the Kool Deadwood Nights gathering. Then I ended the night watching a bunch of beautiful ladies dance to some great blues music at the 10.

8/26 Thursday

No morning poker tourney so I went to the library. It was for the best because I met a wonderful girl named Amber Neal here. She was having a bad week so I asked her to call or text me later so I could treat her to a fun night and help her find her smile.

After I edited some photos and left the library I met Nui and Jill outside their Sacred Ground Coffee Shop. I added them on twitter (SacredCoffee) and facebook (SacredGroundsCoffeeShop) and would return later to review their shop.

From there I went to play in the Cadillac Jacks 1pm tourney and got 9th/18. I then returned to the library to post my second week blog and upload current photos.

I only had 3 hours before the $22 7p tourney and not enough time to go swim at Jenny Gulch so I just found a rock to sit on and write in Spearfish Canyon.

The tournament went great with the exception of the last hand for first place. I was short stacked most of the final hour and entering the final table. Three people were knocked out in one hand and then I survived an all in with AQ vs JJ by hitting three Queens which tripled me up to 16k in chips. I waited for two more to get knocked out and then it was my 16k vs 50k and 60k. The guy with 50k bluffed all in with 83 and I walked to 2nd for $200.

Finished the night with the Rude band at Saloon #10.

8/27 Friday

Started the day with a great effort in the Saloon 10 morning tourney. I was one hand from finishing 3rd and getting in the money. I was chip leader most of the tournament but the last hand saw me on the small blind with 10k in chips betting into the big blind big stack at 120k. He had 10-2 against my AK suited and he caught a 10. First was $284.

I met Julie from Schererville by Crown Point Indiana which was an old stomping ground of mine when I dated Kera Brust. She didn’t want to take the $10 add on at the break so I covered it for her. We chatted a bit about NW Indiana at the break. When she got knocked out I gave her my number in case she wanted directions to Jenny Gulch. I don’t know why it is but every girl I have met this month has smoked tobacco.

I had not heard back from Amber that I met at the library yesterday so I texted her number to see if she would be at the concerts. Evidently her ex was around and he got her phone and called me back with the typical jealous protective “don’t call my fiancé again” message. Some guys just don’t understand that girls can have none sexual relations with guy friends.

I ate Chinese at Kitty’s and then shaved before heading to Jenny, When I arrived at Jenny there was about 10 boats partying and 20 swimmers in the water. The place was jumping with tunes and lots of booze and cliff jumpers. I sat by a nice lady living in Paia Maui.

After jumping a few times and stinging my hand pretty good I laid out in the sun and wrote until my journal was caught up.

When I got back to Deadwood there were collectible cars everywhere for the Kool Deadwood Nights Festival. I walked around and took some picts and then headed for some music.

I spent the evening at Saloon 10 with Julie and the Sioux Falls crew I played poker with this morning. She ended up choosing to get close with one of them so I went in the next room to play a little black Jack and then went back to camp at 1. I could not stand the band called RUDE that was playing because they use electronic voice mixers so they would sound like the original artists. You can barely call people like that musicians because it is more like a lip-synching theatre performance.

8/2 Saturday

I had the worst luck ever in the 11a and 1p tourneys which really sucked because the payouts were $500 and $1400. Saturday is the biggest payday for tourneys here.

I went up to Lead to check out the car auction and get my memory card from the library. I missed most of the auction and the library was closed so I went into the Sacred Grounds Coffee Shop.

The coffee shop is owned by a nice lady named Jill and her Thai partner. They came from Colorado to get away from the overcrowding to open the new store.

Sacred Grounds mixes Thai food with your standard coffee shop services. The shop has a clean presentation with tan walls and soft red trim. The walls are covered with a variety of art and the lighting was just a shade low for comfortable reading at night.

They had a stocked book shelf and a yoga studio upstairs with classes available on Wednesday nights. The menu boards were neat and easily read and the bathroom was tidy. Jill was very aware of surrounding cultural events and invited me to listen to their friends at the Tobacco Room under the Oyster Casino. She also told me to checkout a bluegrass jam session at Rochford on Sunday afternoons.

I also learned that downtown Lead was fading from the mine closing and the city council has failed in efforts to entice main street growth. Five buildings were vacant and only a terrace grill, coffee shop, library and art studio were keeping it alive. There was very little sidewalk space to entice people to stop and use their services. There is also no recycling or renewable groups in the area which is sad for such a beautiful green environment. The mining industry has failed in green community building in my opinion. A person could easily get funding from the mine to operate a community cleanup service.

I left the coffee shop and went to visit with the local dart throwing group. They were having a league forming meeting and luck of the draw tourney.

They were nice people so I hung out to get info on the big tourney at the Clock Tower in Rapid City on Saturdays. Then a cute girl came in so I stayed a bit longer until she left.

I found my way back to main street Deadwood for the Platters concert and checked the Tobacco room to see if music was on stage yet. I then spotted the same girl from the bar at Lead checking me out and following me down the street.

I asked her if she was following me and then acted like I was not interested and went into Mustang Sally’s to watch part of the Vikings game. I knew I would see her again at the Tobacco Room so I played it casual.

I went back to the Tobacco Room after getting caught up on my writing at the sports bar.


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