Sturgis, SD (August 2015) – WOW!!!! What a motorcycle event with over 750,000 other bikers, just like us!!!
Tami and I were extremely fortunate to attend this years 75th Anniversary of Sturgis Motorcycle Rally in S. Dakota. Stay with me for additional details a bit later, but in summary, the guys trailered the bikes and the girls flew into Rapid City, SD. We all stayed at the Buffalo Chip Campground and saw almost all the popular tourist attractions in the area.
Chris and I started out on a Wednesday afternoon for the 2000 mile excursion across the country to SD. We’ve both dreamed of this day to come for the past 10-months and finally it was here. There was a ton of planning along the way in making sure we had a safe and enjoyable trip. I took two weeks off from work, the first time I’ve done that in over 20-years. I remember the last time I did and it was a refreshing experience to have two consecutive weeks in a row off. HIGHLY recommend it!
Personally I love to travel. Take your pick train, plane, or auto for me. Well this road trip was in a 2015 Chevy HD 3500 diesel with 20ft enclosed trailer for the bikes and luggage. Just a mammoth of a rig that Chris borrowed from a friend. I’m not a Chevy guy, but this truck was impressive to drive. We took turns driving in 3-hour shifts which was about the time we needed fuel or a bio-break anyways.
Chris and I did make a stop at the Harley Museum in Milwaukee. What a great place to see the history of the company and the 400+ bikes from all the different years there. Great stop!
The rented trailer at the Buffalo Chip was just the right size for 2 couples. This one company that we rented from, had just under 500 campers rented, just at the Chip. We estimated that the company grossed $1 million just in rented campers at the Chip. The numbers got staggering as you looked around the campground and all you saw where campers everywhere. Okay, time for a beer. haha!!
During the week we rode to the Badlands, Spearfish Canyon, Devils Tower, Deadwood, Mt Rushmore, Needles Highway, and more. Putting on over a 1,000 miles on the bikes in a week. The weather was 95% sunny and nice temps the whole week camping. A few huge rain showers ( I mean raining buckets) at night. We did catch a bit of hail/rain while in Wyoming but we out ran that that system in the opposite direction. By the time we stopped for a beer at the Stonehouse Saloon, we where dry again. Tami and I loved to hangout on the balcony of The Knuckle Saloon in downtown Sturgis to people/bike watch.
The sights at Sturgis are nothing like the oldest motorcycle rally in Laconia, NH. People dressed in crazy outfit, driving unique scoots, and a sea of denim jeans. Then again, I’ve never seen so many bikers in one spot. Streets are packed with people, bikes, tattoos, and body paint. Even Tami got her chest painted and drove her motorcycle around town and back to the Chip getting a bunch of men and woman jumping in front of her to take her picture. She even jumped on stage to do some dancing with a band that was playing at The Beaver Bar.
Almost every night we laid up the bikes so we could consume moonshine and beers at the camper. We’d always head to the main stage at the Chip to see the multiple bands playing. The Chip is known to have the best bands in Sturgis and this year’s 75th wasn’t any different. All four of us even managed to zip-line across the crowd during a performance.
We’re glad we got to Full Throttle Saloon before it burnt to the ground. I really liked the place with all the unique “props” throughout the establishment and having the option to drive your bike into the in-field. Was a very cool place to hangout at.
Doing a comparison from Laconia to Sturgis….. In Laconia the last weekend of the rally is when the crowds surge to the event… In Sturgis, it the first weekend… just a weird and not what I was expecting when half the campground left on a Sat. haha… anyways, Chris and I left on a Sat afternoon after dropping the girls off at the airport and we drove 36-hours straight to get home.
Our first time being at the Sturgis Motorcycle Rally and the 75th anniversary was not disappointing. For now we say “see you later” as we’ll be back for more fun in the future. (JM)