Seeking Sturgis recomendations

Discussion in 'The Perfect Line and Other Riding Myths' started by Rubber Dutchman, Jun 24, 2019.

  1. Rubber Dutchman

    Rubber Dutchman Lurking Adventurer

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    My wife and I have decided to do Sturgis in August. We'll be out there for about 5 days and I'm looking for advice on how we should spend our time. There are concerts we'll go and see. We're trailering the bike out and will want to do some riding in the Black Hills. She's never been to that part of the country so Mt. Rushmore and Crazy Horse will probably be on the list. Outside of that our options are pretty wide open. What should we definitely go and see? What should we avoid?
    #1
  2. VX Rider

    VX Rider Long timer

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    how about avoiding Sturgis
    and just ride everywhere else
    #2
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  3. kwthom

    kwthom Retiree apprentice - willing to learn

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    Sturgis Motorcycle Museum.
    Wall Drug.
    Badlands National Park.
    Crazy Horse Memorial.
    #3
  4. ZappBranigan

    ZappBranigan Still Riding

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    Sturgis is probably the worst time to ride the Black Hills. Well, mid-Winter is probably the WORST but Sturgis is 2nd worst.

    Great roads, but with 500,000 straight-piped Harleys crawling through every turn, don't expect much fun in the curves.

    Don't get me wrong, I think every motorcycle rider should experience the "spectacle" of Sturgis. It's fun if you go there with the right attitude.

    But there are much better times to ride the Black Hills when they aren't crowded and crazy expensive.
    #4
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  5. moxford

    moxford Adventurer

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    Went last year for the first time ... it's apparently going downhill from what it "used to be."

    Sturgis proper was tame. Walked up and down a bit looking at the bikes, but /shrug. We didn't do the concerts, mostly focusing on riding and food and people/bike-watching.

    Black Hills, even with tons of people, was still a very fun cruise - just sit back and chill and enjoy it.

    Rushmore was fun, definitely worth seeing.

    Crazy Horse was ... interesting. Stay for the light show just to saw you've seen a spectacle straight out of the 80s. :) Would be a night-ride back, though, so be careful of deer (or just take the truck to this one ... sacrilege, I know ...)

    I loved Deadwood. A lot. Lots of bikes there, but cool history and some neat places to eat. It's small though.

    Custer State Park was a lot of fun, but I recall it being short. It's like most other parks, but hey, any park* on a bike is good!

    Spearfish Canyon was a fun ride too. We did that a couple times, different times of the day. More fun going up than down. :)

    Beartooth Highway/Pass was -amazing-. Highly recommended if you can find a way to swing it, since it's a bit further west.

    *The only part of the trip that I'd pass on was Yellowstone NP, actually. Bison are cool but 2 lanes of stop-and-go crowds, in the heat, on bikes, for 4 hours ... no thank you! In the truck with A/C ... probably worth seeing once. Got to see Old Faithful erupt, though, and the steam pools and fields around there are pretty neat, so it wasn't a total fail.
    #5
  6. aa3jy

    aa3jy Been here awhile

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    As a former Minuteman Missile Combat Crew member stationed at Ellsworth AFB, Rapid City, SD..check out the Minuteman Missile Historical site at the east end of the Bad Lands loop..

    https://www.nps.gov/mimi/index.htm

    ..advise getting tickets ASAP as it it fills up early
    #6
  7. jspringator

    jspringator Long timer

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    The Minuteman site was one of the highlights of the trip. They have a museum, but the actual launch site is several miles away. We rode like a bat out of hell to get there before closing.

    [​IMG]Untitled by jspringator, on Flickr

    [​IMG]Untitled by jspringator, on Flickr
    #7
  8. jay547

    jay547 Long timer

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    Watching this thread for future ride plans.
    #8
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  9. Bruincounselor

    Bruincounselor North Plains Drifter Supporter

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    Devil's Tower is a cool side trip too.
    #9
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  10. Tripped1

    Tripped1 Smoove, Smoove like velvet.

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    I wasn't impressed at all.

    Roads were meh at best speed limits very very low and there were crashed Harelys and campers everywhere. That was just Labor Day weekend.

    Rode in from Spearfish, did Deadwood, Rushmore, Playhouse, Custer and Needles and GTFO'd for Colorado. Right after lunch.

    No way you would catch me there anytime near the rally.
    #10
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  11. aa3jy

    aa3jy Been here awhile

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    It’s the F-01 that will be in need of tickets as this is the underground Launch Control Facility(LCF) where the Combat Crew (consisting of 2 officers)where on 24 hr alert.. this is the control point of 10 nuclear tipped Minuteman missiles that could be launched from.. Tickets are limited due to the number of people that can fit into the elevator and in side the underground Launch Control Center (LCC) capsule..

    I believe one of the Park Rangers is a former Launch Officer..Combat Crew Member..and is very knowledgeable .

    Clay AA3JY
    former MM Combat Crew officer
    F-01 Mud Butte
    67th SMS, 44 SMW
    Ellsworth AFB, Rapid City, SD
    #11
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  12. dirty_sanchez

    dirty_sanchez Dirty_Sanchez

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    Belle Fourche, a half hour northish of Sturgis is another cool visit. A neat museum, a few period correct log cabins you can climb around in as well as a nifty monument to the geographical center of North America. Park the bike and all of this stuff is right together. On a state highway north of I-90, on the way back from Devils tower, there's another pretty nifty historical mine right off of the road you can climb around in. Plenty of history in the area. On the day you do the Badlands NP visit you could venture south just a bit to find Flagg Mtn. It's all easy gravel, but you can ride to the top of it and wander around where an old Gov't Radio Installation was located.

    I learned about the area by reading up on one of Cannonshot's famous Ride Reports for the Black Hills.
    #12
  13. Karlfitt

    Karlfitt Long timer Supporter

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    Thanks for this heads up.

    I found the Titan missile museum in Tucson by accident, I liked the tour.
    Will have to hit this one up too.
    #13
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  14. aa3jy

    aa3jy Been here awhile

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    #14
  15. Rubber Dutchman

    Rubber Dutchman Lurking Adventurer

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    Great stuff. Thanks.
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  16. kwthom

    kwthom Retiree apprentice - willing to learn

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    I've been *once* to Sturgis...

    In June - while they were in the process of setting up for the little, small August gathering up there.

    I've never been a big fan of riding with 'groups', whether or not you're actually a part of the group (see the recent NH tragedy for why...). I'm sure it's a fun time, but...

    No worries; a LOT of others will be doing the same things at the same time.
    #16
  17. Rubber Dutchman

    Rubber Dutchman Lurking Adventurer

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    The "spectacle" is definitely part of the reason for going and that's the attitude we have in mind. If we were going purely for the ride then I would not go during the rally and I would be going alone since the wife doesn't ride with me often or for very long. This way we both get something out of it.
    #17
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  18. Rubber Dutchman

    Rubber Dutchman Lurking Adventurer

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    I'm not the peg scraping knee dragging type anyway so a leisurely cruise is okay with me, especially when 2 up.
    #18
  19. aa3jy

    aa3jy Been here awhile

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    Having been stationed for 4 years in Rapid City, SD I know the area and the previously mentioned suggestions well.. I to look for non heavily traveled tourists areas ,like Mt. Rushmore, especially around the Sturgis Rally..I generally find out of the way sites like..

    https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wounded_Knee_Massacre

    It’s not an easy place to get to..also visiting takes you into USA’s worst past history..American Native reservations...

    P.S. if you see Bison (not Buffalo) on the roads..stay far away and don’t crowd them..they can be very dangerous..there has been reports of unknowing or very ignorant tourists being seriously hurt/killed by them..
    #19
  20. WindBlast

    WindBlast Three chords and the truth.....

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    Seeking Sturgis recomendations

    I wouldn't go.
    #20
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