By now you know my story: July 2009, 8000 km road trip, 3 generations, 1 van. Crazy? Yes. Lomographically limited? In no way whatsoever! I took along 10 cameras and 40 rolls of film. We passed through 10 American states and 3 Canadian provinces, but we only had time to visit one carved mountain…
We arrived at Mount Rushmore at 11:30am on a Saturday. This attraction is SO easy to find, simply because every car on the highway seems to be heading straight for it…and it IS a mountain after all, they’re kind of hard to miss. ;)
There is no entry fee or admission charged at this National Memorial, but they do charge $10 for parking. My guess is that this is a way to get money out of everyone – including those who have already bought a National Parks pass…
From the moment you walk out of the parking structure, you notice that everything is symmetrical here. And the symmetry is on a line perfectly perpendicular to the faces of the Presidents carved into the mountain. The problem that this causes is that every few feet you walk closer to the mountain, you encounter a brand new “photo opportunity”. Seriously, from the moment we left the parkade, we were dodging tourists every two steps as they unexpectedly (at first) stopped to take a picture. So…I didn’t feel bad at all when I pulled out my bag of cameras.
Aside from the obvious attraction of the 4 HUGE heads carved into the mountain, there are some exceptional exhibits here (a nice reprieve from the heat on a hot day also) inside the buildings and out. There is a huge amphitheater down in front of the mountain also – if you are around for a few days, it would be wise to check the schedule ahead of time to see what’s going on. AND of course, there is an extensive gift shop here also.
My biggest regret at this quick lomostop was that we didn’t have enough time to check out the President’s Trail, which is a little hike with interpretive signs along the way.
With its south east exposure, this monument affords the lo-fi photographer with great shots almost anytime you visit.
Be sure to give yourself an absolute minimum of 1 hour to stop here, but you could probably spend a whole day if you want to take it all in.