St. Joseph, Missouri to Mitchell, South Dakota • 377 miles
Day three: entrance into the midwest; high winds; noticeable accent changes; dry, tumbling fields; endless horizons; three states (MO, IA, SD)
We weren't driving long before entering Iowa, the state of cornfields. We detoured to the welcome center off the Lincoln Highway (spans across thirteen states), which had its own walking/nature trails out back. The trails led up a hill to a pretty view of Iowa farmland. You could see for miles. Inside the welcome center, we were offered an Iowa cherry drink. Iowa knows how to do welcome centers - this was the perfect pit stop; a mix of a bit of exercise + culture. There was a slight haziness across the Iowa horizon and many old barns and corn fields everywhere you looked.
South Dakota welcomed us with super high winds. At first, the scenery consisted of casinos every few miles, then suddenly switched to vast, empty plains. The wind gusts made the driving conditions terrrrrible. Just as you would imagine the midwest, tumbleweeds flew across the highway, and the sky was an eerie grayish color.
We were able to stop at Sioux Falls... we explored the park and admired the beautifuuul waterfalls. As it got darker, it also got colder and windier, which meant that it was time to hit the road again. We had planned to drive further, but the wind was just so bad that we ended up stopping for the night in Mitchell, SD. Already we have noticed so many changes from the south, like the midwestern accents. The locals really do say "you bet" frequently (which I loved hearing)... and I have never been more aware of our southern accents (I never thought I had one until now, haha).
Before arriving in Mitchell, we were entertained by the most beautiful sunset on I-90. The entire outline of the sun was visible and we were able to watch it sink into the great plains.