Sturgis Rally 2017 Motorcycle Recap

We headed out of the beautiful colorful Colorado and through Wyoming before we made it to the Western part of South Dakota where we met up with our good friend Tali. There were big plans of drinking beer, doing karaoke, and visiting the annual Sturgis Rally in Sturgis, SD. Oh yeah, lots of motorcycles and we were going to take a nice hot shower at Tali’s house.

Sturgis Rally 2017

Before we get into the whole story, it should be noted that we van camped in a few awesome places before arriving in Rapid City, South Datoka that will be discussed in the 2nd half of the post. So what did we do first once we got there? Head to the local watering hole of course! This place was called “Clock Tower Lounge” and it was pretty badass. We made some new friends and Bailey killed it as usual on the karaoke. She did an always enjoyable Honky Cat by Elton John. Classic!

sturgis rally 2017 motorcycle

Bailey on one of the main drags in Sturgis on Sunday evening.

It was safe to say that we all had enough drinks on Friday at the clock tower that on Saturday we basically sat around all day and watched movies, history channel, and the like. It was a great day of relaxation. We capped off the day with a delicious order of pizza and wings from local papa johns.

Sunday afternoon we headed out of Tali’s place in Rapid City and drove 45 minutes up to the Sturgis rally. We saw so many motorcycles on the highway and people camping at all the RV parks with all their gear. We toured much of the town of Sturgis before heading over to the Iron Horse Saloon to see David Allan Coe. I’ve seen him a handful of times down in Daytona Beach at Bike Week back in the day… A couple pictures from the show are below.

sturgis rally 2017 motorcycle

If you look real close to the right of Bailey head, you can see David on stage.

sturgis rally 2017 motorcycle

David Allan Coe and his now wife, Kim.

David Allan Coe live

He played a great show, and it was free too. I guess that made the $10 Budweisers worth it. Plenty of classics were played. I actually got a video of ‘The Ride > Long Haired Redneck’ and it’s on youtube now with everything else in the world.  After the DAC show we explored around the town a bit more. Checked out more sweet motorcycles, got a couple hotdogs, and capped it off with a great big funnel cake. We also bought my dad a poker chip from the local Harley Davidson dealership. Apparently that’s a thing…

First, after a Sunday full of motorcycles and music at the Sturgis rally, we hopped back in the van and headed west back towards Wyoming. I know you’re thinking, “Wait, you didn’t go to Badlands National Park while you were there?” and the answer is no, we didn’t. It would have added a couple hundred miles to the trip and it was the hottest part of the summer. We opted to save gas money and head back westward into Wyoming. The next big set destination was Grand Teton National Park and also Yellowstone National Park.

Free camping Wyoming

Let’s check out some of the spots we camped in the van along the way during this timeframe.

On the way into South Dakota we stayed at Gelatt Lake about 20 minutes outside of Laramie, WY. Great little fishing lake with some nice free camp spots all around the lake. We found a spot where no one else was and a pit toilet was nearby. It was great for the night. We saw a couple fishermen that evening and the next morning.

Dinner at Gelatt Lake

Making dinner at Gelatt Lake 20 minutes outside Laramie, WY.

Beautiful sunset on Gelatt Lake

Beautiful sunset on Gelatt Lake

Free camping South Dakota

We camped in one other spot before arriving at Tali’s house in South Dakota. This place was about 15 miles outside of Hot Springs, SD in a place called Sheps Canyon. Another awesome spot next to a lake…

This particular spot has paid and free sites. Of course we went with the freebies. There was a handful of other folks camped on this reservoir because there was plenty room for more rigs to pull up and camp.

Van at night

Van, fire, and Bailey underneath the stars next to Angostura Reservoir in Sheps Canyon.

Amazing van view

Another view from where we camped. Simply amazing.

This place in Sheps Canyon was great because of all the wide open views once you got there. We would have stayed there a couple days if we didn’t have plans for a nice hot shower in Rapid City! Most noteworthy is that this spot also had pit toilets a short walk from where we were camped. No water and no trash. The usual pack it in – pack it out. FreeCampsites coming through again with another steller spot.

Thanks for reading about our time in South Dakota and Sturgis Rally 2017. Now i’ll get to writing on a huge post about our explorations of Wyoming… Cheers!



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