Rollin to the Coast – Day 2 Valley City, ND to Dickinson, ND
The second day of a long motorcycle trip is always a little rough. The first day you are excited to get going and you aren’t sore………yet. To be honest, I had things hurting that I did not know I had on day 2 of our Rollin to the Coast motorcycle trip. Fortunately, the first part of the day was an easy ride to Jamestown, “buffalo city”, to see the Buffalo Museum.
Jamestown is a very interesting stop as they have combined a visitors center, a frontier village, the monument of the worlds largest buffalo and the buffalo museum in a small area so you can park once and see them all. There is a nominal charge for the buffalo museum but it is well worth it. The back of the museum is a wild area where live buffalo roam freely. There is a large viewing deck with powerful binoculars mounted for close up looks at the buffalo. We even saw the albino buffalo which is as I understand is quite lucky.
As you can see in the pictures the sun is out today so even with the cool temps it was good for the morale after the brutal first day of the trip.
After taking in the sights of Jamestown we were off to Bismarck, the capital of North Dakota. It had been many years since I had been to Bismarck and I was shocked at how much it had grown. We pulled off the freeway to check out the area by the state capital. There is so much to see and do in the Bismarck / Mandan area that it was unfortunate that we did not have more time to spend. There really is something for everyone here whether you are a history buff or a shopper or just want to enjoy the great outdoors, Bismarck would be a great destination for you. I really enjoyed revisiting the downtown area and the riverfront with all the parks and trails.
After we cruised the river road we crossed over the Missouri river and came upon a really fun diner. Kroll’s is in Mandan. We were looking for a certain motorcycle dealership when we found Kroll’s. Great food and great job of recreating an era gone by.
After a late lunch we really needed to get back on the road if we were going to get to Dickinson that night. We were sorry to leave Bismarck without being able to see more of the town.
About a half hour west of Bismarck is the town of New Salem, ND. Not your typical tourist destination but they have Sue. New Salem Sue. A 38 foot tall Holstein Cow built on top of a hill overlooking town and the freeway. We had to pull over to see Sue. It is my understanding that Sue is bigger than the world’s biggest buffalo in Jamestown.
The view from where Sue stands is really impressive and worth the short side trip off the highway.
After we left New Salem we started seeing signs for the enchanted highway. What was that? When we saw the giant sculpture of the geese in flight we had to exit to check this out. It seems that a local farmer/artist felt the need to build ten giant sculptures along this stretch of road south of the freeway. We drove a little ways down the enchanted highway. Just far enough to see the deer statue. The whole idea is interesting but we needed to get to Dickinson. Here are a couple of the statues we saw:
If we had know that there was an enchanted highway we might have been able to work that into our route for this trip. Next time.
After getting back on the highway and headed to Dickinson we found ourselves in oil country. It was booming out there with construction and development everywhere. We arrived in Dickinson in the early evening. There was a lot of traffic. This place was really hopping. Unfortunately we were too late to visit the Dakota Dinosaur Museum which was on our to do list. There are just too many interesting things to see and not enough time.
After two long days of riding and sightseeing, it was time for Grandma and I to shut down for the night. Day 3 would be a great day as well with visits to Theodore Roosevelt National Park and Medora, North Dakota.
If you are planning a trip to North Dakota, be sure to contact the North Dakota Commerce Department Tourism division. We did and found them to be very helpful planning our trip.