I really had no idea what to expect from Sturgis. I decided to stay at the Buffalo Chip Campground because that’s where all the awesome shows were. This first night I arrived Bob Dylan was opening for Kid Rock. I rode through town on the way to the Chip. Bikes everywhere! It was packed. I had been told you can cut through the neighborhood to get around the mayhem. But the real mayhem is at the Buffalo Chip and surrounding campgrounds and the only way to get there is through town. There were as many bikers winding their way through the neighborhood as there were on the main road. It was nuts and I was totally digging it. No matter which route you take you are funneled into the one road that goes to all the campsites. After about 2 miles one approaches the action. There is a new place on the left. They have some big bands playing there too. On the right is the Full Throttle Saloon site followed by the Legendary Buffalo Chip.
I pulled in, registered and went looking for a place to pitch my tent. I pulled up to what looked like a good spot and introduced myself to my would be neighbors. They were a real nice group from Washington, Dave, Kelly, Diana and Wog. They offered me a beer before I even got my tent set up. They had a canopy tent which is a nice piece of equipment at a campsite with no shade.
We were sitting around talking before the show when my other neighbor came over and introduced himself. He was Randy from Texas. A self proclaimed Good Ol’ Boy with wonderfully colorful descriptions on matters of daily life. He stands 6 foot 4 easy and is very funny as he tells stories with ease while every once in a while interrupted with a “well anyway”, and then he continues in a long Texas singing kind of talk.
I rode around the campsite to get my bearings strait. It is quite a scene. In some areas are campers as far as you can see. In other areas tents, cars and bikes. I had a look at the stage area as it was filling up. Inside are all the vendors and a grocery store. They are open for breakfast, lunch and dinner.
The first night we were going to see Bob Dylan and Kid Rock. I was excited to be here and walked all over the place with a smile on my face. Sturgis is a fun place to be. I only had my small camera this night. I went back to the campsite to get my big camera, but a dweeb at the gate said Kid Rock doesn’t allow those types of cameras. Geek. I probably could have tried another gate, but I just brought the camera back to the tent.
The show was great. I missed the end of the show because I went back for my camera to give it another try, but people were exiting as I was returning. I had no sense of time and didn’t really care. I was having fun. I got stepped on while taking this shot below. I didn’t have a tripod, so I had my head under a bush trying to balance the camera on the ground when,”UGH” this dude steps on me. Later I was walking around and this guy next to me said something about being lost. I say, “Yeah this place is nuts!” He says, “I know, I just stepped on a guy back there.” I didn’t tell him it was me.
During the day you can ride your bike right into the stage area. At night they have a cut off time as to when you can bring your bike into a show.
Words and pictures can’t describe the buzz you get from being here at Sturgis, but I’ll try to let some pictures do the talking.
This car was all banged up from the previous years’ hail storm.
Here is Mikey from American Choppers. He and his brother were out there promoting the new show.
Then Mötley Crüe rocked the place.
Some of the campers brought their own stripper poles.
The day after Mötley Crüe, Randy my big Texan neighbor, offered to show me around a bit. We rode out to the Broken Spoke Campsite with a drive thru bar.
Randy treated me to a bike wash. Bonnie was filthy.
Then we rode down the Spearfish Canyon before returning for Ozzy.
All of the shows were great. I had a blast at Sturgis. I will definitely be back!
At about 4 in the morning I saw a bunch of cops come flying into the campsite. I walked over to see what was going on. I heard people yelling, “Over here, Over here” to the cops as they passed. When I got there I saw a girl had been run over while in her sleeping bag. She was pulled up into the wheel well. The guys from the truck were saying the parking break slipped. I heard someone else say they saw two guys jumped out of the truck. It was horrid to see her stuck up there screaming. The fire Department came and lifted the truck. They slipped a board under the girl and removed her. A helicopter came to take her to the hospital. The next day I asked around and was told the girl was OK. She only had some slipped discs and was going to be fine. I took this after she was removed. It didn’t seem right to take a photo before that.
I left Sturgis with a bang as I fired off this 1929 Thompson machine gun.