Gold Rush


Sunny Badlands

While in Chicago, I posted an ad on Craigslist, looking for a rideshare towards Yellowstone. Within two days, someone named Trevor sent me a message. Trevor was not only willing to go West, he was interested in going camping and hiking with me! Dora found that a bit odd, and my friends from New York were slightly sketched out. But... why? Driving and camping all the way to the other side of the continent with a complete stranger? Sure, go for it!

Trevor came to pick me up in his gray car from 1988. A Ford Crown Victoria it seems. Exactly the kind of car that I imagine when I think about road movies in the States. Since I still don't know how to drive a car, he had to drive all the way, from Chicago to Yellowstone, more than 2300 km long that is. But we are still friend.

On the way, we crossed the huge prairies of Minnesota and South Dakota, went across the surprising rock formations of the Badlands, visited the Mount Rushmore by night, camped in the middle of the Blackwoods, had breakfast in Deadwood and a look at the Devil's Tower. Given all that, in the end it was not that spooky.

In the early 1860's, thousands of people tried make their way through the Badlands and across the Rockies before winter, rushing for gold in Idaho, Montana, and British Columbia. Ten years later, in 1872, the first national park was created in Yellowstone.

After three days driving, we arrived late at night at the East Entrance of Yellowstone Park, and stopped for the night.