And then, just like my first visit, we stayed for the lighting ceremony:
And as usual, I loved it. I adore Mt. Rushmore, even when my age and education and nature should have jaded me. Every time, though, that first view, whether from the road, or by the lane of state flags catches my breath. The sheer audacity and vigorous hope and faith in America evidenced by blasting out statues of our heroes into a mountain amazes me--something that truly seems American. I've been to London, full of statues, and Washington, D.C., equally awash in monuments. But here in the west we did something arrogant, environmentally unfriendly, and wild. And for me, it works. Maybe next time I can see it in the winter. Or on the 4th of July.