Mount Rushmore National Memorial, South Dakota

Mount Rushmore National MemorialThe most famous set of mugs in the world. I first visited Mt. Rushmore in 1993 as part of my family’s epic 30-day road trip that took us over 9,000 miles around the country. My brother, Ethan, and three of his buddies hit it on their own epic road trip… spring break and they hit all four corners of the Lower 48: California (the starting/ending point), Florida, Maine, and Washington with everything in between. But when they stopped to see George, Tom, Teddy, and Abe, they managed to utilize the camera’s timer and captured a picture of the four of ’em mugging the mugs. It’s a pretty comical photo. And since the dude who shot their picture is now famous and has an entire effect named after him, it’s all the funnier. I think Dave (the photog) was Teddy. All three guys were in my brother’s wedding. Good times.

Who says national monuments should just be good for Cary Grant and Eva Saint Marie to run around? Or Nic Cage? If Hollywood can enjoy the presidents, why can’t we mere mortals?

Mount Rushmore National MemorialSo taking photos of Mt. Rushmore isn’t exactly one of those things were you can do a lot. I wasn’t there at night so I couldn’t get them illuminated with a dark night sky. There weren’t any clouds to break up the monotony of a clear, blue sky. It wasn’t raining so their noses don’t look like they’re running. Let’s face it, Mt. Rushmore is what it is and there’s not a lot you can do with it.

About the only thing that offered the opportunity of something original was on the approach to the amphitheater. All of the state flags hang in the walkway. Inscribed on the columns are the dates when they entered the United States of America. California was on the first column, but I couldn’t get the presidents situated in the void at that angle… I had to move forward. <sigh> C’est la vie. It happens. We can’t always have our cake and eat it too.

And this fancy-shmancy walkway wasn’t there in 1993. You just walked up to the railing and shot a pictures of the presidents. Done.

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