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Mount Rushmore Memorial - Things to see and do at Mount Rushmore

BY: Travel Lover | Category: Travel | Post Date: 2009-08-21

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Lying in the black hills of South Dakota, Mount Rushmore National Memorial is a carved granite structure featuring the faces of the presidents of United States of America in the first 150 years of its history. This majestic memorial is at 1737 m above sea level and covers over 1275 acres. Mount Rushmore National Memorial is a enormous sculpture on the side of Mount Rushmore which has the faces of former presidents George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, Abraham Lincoln and Theodore Roosevelt. This south east facing structure is 60 foot high and is the world's greatest mountain carving. Each Face on Mount Rushmore is as tall as a six story building.

Earlier in 1923 Doane Robinson came up with this idea to attract more people towards this part of South Dakota. A popular sculptor in those days known by the name of Gulton Borglum was hired to do the job. The Sculptor chose this spot because it was the highest peak in the area and also because of its south eastern direction since it would receive sun light for most of the day. He started his work with the carvings of George washingtons face first which was completed in 1934, then Thomas Jefferson's face was completed in 1936, Abraham Lincoln in 1937 and Theodore Roosevelt in 1939. The sculptor worked on the carvings for some more time before his sudden death and then his son took over the task but soon the project came to an end due to the lack of funding.

However, today Mount Rushmore National Memorial is a popular tourist attraction drawing tourists from all over the world just to see these four important figures of American history. The busiest months at Mount Rushmore are June and August whereas, the best months to come here are April, May, September and October.


The main thing to see and do here is to enjoy the carvings on this huge rock that will leave you wondering how it was done. The path between the main information center and the Grand View Terrace has flags on either side. This path is known as Avenue Of Flags and has a total of 56 flags representing the 50 states, three territories, the district of Colombia, Puerto Rico and Northern Mariana Islands. Right after the path of Flags there is a balcony to view the structure, this balcony is known as Grand View Terrace.

There's a half mile presidential Trail starting at the Grand View Terrace down to the Sculptor's Studio and then back to the Grand View Terrace. The trail enables the tourists to get a closer view of the carvings. Several original tools that were used in the sculpture as well as pictures that were taken while it was being sculpted are at display at the Sculptor's Studio. Also, every half an hour a short story is told about the making of this historical monument, the history of the sculptor and how he carved the monument.

In the months of May to August and September, a ceremony is held in the evenings starting with a short talk about Mount Rushmore National Memorial, then a film titled Freedom, America's Lasting Legacy is show and then the great monument with the face carvings of the four presidents is lighted up and the National Anthem is played in the background. There is no ceremony held for the rest of the year but the sculpture is lit up every evening after the sun goes down.

The area also has a restaurant and a gift shop. There's also a museum below the Grand View Terrace which has books and lots of information about Mount Rushmore National Memorial and the four Presidents carved on it. Also, there's a cave behind the heads of Mount Rushmore known as Hall of records. The drilling was started by Gutzon Borglum but was halted within a year.

Close to Mount Rushmore Memorial there are several caves that are open for the tourists, two of these are a part of National parks known as Jewel Cave National Monument and Wind Cave National Park. These caves have several formations in them that are unique and eye catching.

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this is good info
Bob 2009-12-23

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