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The two RV Gypsies
at Devil's Gulch Park
Garretson, South Dakota
September 5, 2016

USA map showing location of South DakotaSouth Dakota map showing location of Garretson SD

Devil's Gulch - Jesse James' Big Jump In 1876, Jesse James robbed the bank in Northfield, Minnesota. Jesse and his brother headed west toward Dakota Territory. They then went separate ways, trying to shake the posse. The lawmen were literally right on the heels of Jesse, as he and his horse stood on the precipice of a dizzyingly high bluff; this was Devil's Gulch. A fifteen foot gash in the rocks separated him from the other side and freedom. Supposedly he spurred on his horse and actually leapt across the canyon, evading the posse and eventually linking up with brother Frank. There is now a foot bridge at Devil's Gulch, spanning the chasm that Jesse James jumped over during a pursuit. Fact or Fable? Either way, Devil's Gulch is an amazing geological curiosity in southeastern South Dakota.

bulletin board about the Legend of Jesse James
Devils Gulch sign dam

a dam at the beginning of the trail

dam at the beginning of the trail dam at the beginning of the trail

Below: (This photo by SD Tourism because the two RV Gypsies could not get an angle like this). Unlike Jesse James, modern visitors do not have to worry about the 70-foot-drop at Devil's Gulch, nor jump over a 15-foot wide opening, thanks to an iron footbridge.

70-foot-drop at Devil's Gulch

The two RV Gypsies walked over the iron footbridge

Lee Duquette on the iron footbridge Karen  Duquette on the iron footbridge
looking down through the iron footbridge

Below: View from each side of the footbridge

View from one side of the footbridge View from one side of the footbridge

After crossing the footbridge there were a few steps down and the two RV Gypsies did not know which way to turn, so Lee led off to the right.

Lee Duquette on the stairs woods at Devils Gulch

The Visitor Center was not open on this date, so the two RV Gypsies did not have a trail map and several times they found it difficult to know which way to go. It was a hot day and the mosquitos were out in full-force and even though the two RV Gypsies had sprayed, they decided not to stay in the woods for very long.

muddy looking water a small wooden bridge
Lee Duquette on a hill at Devils Gulch Karen Duquette in the grass at Devils Gulch

Below: Devils Gulch Falls drops 20 feet. Water Source: Split Rock River

sign: Devils Gulch Falls Devils Gulch Falls
Devils Gulch Falls Devils Gulch Falls

Below: The falls as seen through a bridge and the stream on the other side of the bridge

another iron bridge the stream
woods at Devils Gulch

look below
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