Wood River, IL
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Fort Randall, SD
Monday, June 14, 2004 - Fort Randall, South Dakota
Last night we stayed at the Fort Randall Hotel and Casino on the Yankton Sioux Indian reservation (an Indian owned hotel). Everywhere we have been there is gambling nearby. We had a leisurely dinner in the casino restaurant. While we ate, other tables had about three changes of people eating. They were in a hurry to eat and get back to gambling. We watched one woman catching silver dollars raining out of her slot and frantically feeding them into the one next to it. We fed one dollar in and that was enough - we didn't really know what we were supposed to do anyway.
After we left the casino hotel this morning we drove through the most interesting terrain on the way to Chamberlain, SD. Part of the time it was rolling lumps as Richard called them. Mile after mile of crops with great big sprinklers in the fields. Right now things are wet as there has been a lot of rain but later it will be dry as we are in a semi arid part of the country. These are huge farms and no farmhouses for miles except for old abandoned ones. Most of the farm machinery is giant John Deere tractors and attachments. After a while things changed and the soil was not as good. We think this is where the volcanic ash settled about ten thousand years ago from a volcano in Idaho. This land was mainly used for grazing huge herds of cattle and some horses. I have never seen such large herds of cattle.