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Borrego Springs, CA

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

The Enchanted Highway

We headed out from the not so great campground in Bismarck this morning and leisurely made our way to the Red Trail Campground in Medora, ND. 

IMG_8495This time we were prepared to get a picture of Salem Sue, the World’s Largest Holstein Cow, in New Salem.  You sure could see Suzie from a long distance.  I simply took the exit ramp up and over the highway and returned to I-94.  I had a plan to enjoy some other roadside attractions more intimately. 

With our early departure, and a time zone change, we made it to Medora just before noon.  We set up, and headed back east on I-94 to take a drive down ‘The Enchanted Highway’.  What a gem of an excursion this decision turned out to be for me.

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Our first stop was at the Geese in Flight sculpture that is readily available for anyone traveling along the interstate.  Would you guess that the stone formations in front of the sculpture are really just painted panels?

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The road up to the sculpture is lined with poles with metal geese along each side reinforcing the theme.  I had originally planned to park the motorhome at this first place, unhook the toad, and drive it down the 32 miles to Regent, ND.  I’m glad I changed my mind, drove ahead to the campground, and returned by car.  Some of the pull off areas would have been a real challenge to drive a rig into and out of.

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Kurt and I voted this one as having the best view of the area.  It’s up on a hill, and the views of the surrounding farms is stunning.

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Next up was the Deer Crossing sculpture.  There are presently eight huge sculptures along the 32 mile road to Regent. 

_MG_0799 A few more miles down the road was Grasshoppers in the Field.  This stop had metal wheat heads as the border around it.  There was a man mowing the lawn around the exhibit.  I pulled over, got out, and asked him if he was the sculptor.  When I was younger, I wouldn’t of had the guts to do that, but now I do.

_MG_0802As it turned out, it was Gary Greff that had this idea 24 years ago to create something that would attract people to his home town of Regent.  What an interesting chat we had with him!  Besides the huge ‘World’s Largest Metal Sculptures’, there is also a picnic area at each stop.  He leases the land around each site, and hopes to put up at least three more, if the local farmers will see ‘the light’, and lease him some more land.

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After our chat, we continued on to view the Fisherman’s Dream sculpture.  Kurt and I voted this one the best of the bunch.  It is the most elaborate one.

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Here we are posing with the rainbow trout to give an idea of how large these sculptures really are.  I got a kick out of the fact that lots of pigeons were living inside each of these creations.  Gary has had lots of help from local farmers who are good at welding._MG_0810We continued on to the Pheasants on the Prairie exhibit.  Just before we arrived here, a large family of pheasants was along the side of the road.

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Then there was the Teddy Rides Again iron sculpture.  We really liked this one as well.  It’s a shame that Gary doesn’t have greater support, as some of the areas are really in need of help and maintenance.

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                   Just two miles before Regent, was the Tin Family.  I got a kick out of the Mom’s hair.

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Last, and really the least, was the Whirligig that was in the town of Regent.  It was kind of a let down after the other huge displays.

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We had some fun with the Tin Family thing in town, and I had a bowl of ice cream from the Enchanted Highway gift shop to help support their efforts.

It was a great day, with the highlight of meeting and getting to talk to the man that dreamed up this idea to attract people to his dying town.  He said about 8000 people a year travel the highway, and it has helped his town stay alive.  This was truly a grand ‘Roadside America’ experience.

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                                                                                THE END!!

Thanks for stopping by… talk to you later,  Judy

29 comments:

  1. Hi Judith:
    Because I've still not made it to North Dakota, I'd not even heard of The Enchanted Highway. Thanks so much for sharing your travelog and gorgeous photos. Now I have that many more reasons to get my RV to North Dakota. Fantastic. mary-pat

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  2. Judy & Kurt - thanks for the fun tour. Becki

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  3. What a neat drive, enjoyed all the art, especially those two clowns that made up the tin family.

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  4. Fun stuff- Great that you got to meet and chat with the artist. He is a very talented guy. I agree the trout is especially good.

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  5. Oh my gosh, this is an outstanding drive. I am glad you posted so many photos. I just love it.
    What a cute idea to let the kids put their heads through the Tin Man and Farmer.

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  6. We will have to seek it out when we are going that waay.

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  7. How great that you had an opportunity to meet the creator of it all. . .what are the chances? Neat. . .

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  8. OK that does it - next time we WILL make this drive! We have passed it twice, without enough time for an "explore", but I promise next time we will do it....

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  9. Wow, I remember the Geese in Flight display when going thru ND a few years ago, but didn't realize there were so many (even better) displays nearby. What a thrill to get to meet the man who dreamed them all up! I'll put this on my list for the next time I drive thru ND!

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  10. Great pictures! Interesting things that people come up with to attract visitors to their town. Those metal sculptures appear to be well done.

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  11. That is so cool...from the concept all the way to the sculptures! Thank goodness for creative minds. Isn't it just great that in our older age we are more confident and curious? And aren't the rewards wonderful?

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  12. Only you could find such a great "The End" photo! Very interesting sculptures, and I'm usually not into that kind of thing, but I believe I'd like to see them some day.

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  13. How awesome! That is enough to make me want to go back to ND just to see those sculptures :)

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  14. This is a great effort . These sculptures are huge and beautiful . Outstanding work .
    Mansarovar Yatra

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  15. I had not heard of this highway and these sculptures. You mentioned that Gary needs more help to keep these areas maintained...why don't you offer to help for a few days while you are there?

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  16. This is just great Judy. We saw the Geese in Flight on our way to TRNP and I put it and the information about the Enchanted Highway on my blog. We had every intention of doing just what you did and then we had the refrigerator problems and lost 2 days. I'm so glad you got to meet Gary. What a tremendous work he has done. Just love this. Really have to go back to see it. Great pictures!

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  17. What a great drive ... definitely worth returning to after leaving the coach at the campground.

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  18. We also did this drive and loved it. So many folks just drive on by and that's such a shame. Of course, Jim's favorite was the fish one. Can't imagine why. We also had ice cream (well Jim did) at the store.

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  19. I'm so jealous you're on the road again! And seeing things. NEW things! Oh well, only seven more months to go. Have fun you two!

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  20. You're already having too much fun with Kurt, we can tell by the smiles on your faces in the pictures of you as that farm couple!

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  21. Very neat sculptures that I haven't seen before. And an even better adventure since you got to meet the artist in person.

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  22. Wow, what a fun drive. We will have to remember that next time we have to go through North Dakota. I think my favourite one was the giant grasshopper with the wheat stalks.

    www.travelwithkevinandruth.com

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  23. Hi Judy. Nice post. I remember seeing the flying geese sculpture years ago going through ND in the semi w/hubby. Nice memories... Beautiful pictures!

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  24. WOW! I saw Salem Sue on the last trip across to the Boundary Waters, but not the rest. Will have to make get this drive on my bucket list. Safe Trails.

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  25. Learned something new in your blog about North Dakota.

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  26. We enjoyed the Enchanted Highway very much. The sculptures are wonderful. We spent some time in Regent talking to the few folks around, it appears to be a dying town. We were the only ones in the ice cream store and the lady running the store came and sat with us telling us about the farming and the town. it is great to visit places like this.

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  27. My folks stopped there a few years ago..guess it'd be about 14 years ago now...have pictures of Mom standing next to the mom in the family..and photos off them with the big insects and the big partridge. I'd love to go someday myself! Thanks for bringing back memories!

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  28. Nice post.Thanks for sharing this in your blog

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