The Dakotas

Discussion in 'Homesteading Questions' started by ladoodle, Apr 11, 2005.

  1. ladoodle

    ladoodle Member

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    I went to North and South Dakota a couple years ago and fell in love with the vast, spacious, beautiful land. Is anyone from the eastern portions of these states that would like to share their thoughts on living there?
     
  2. Cabin Fever

    Cabin Fever Life NRA Member since 1976 Supporter

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    You must of visited the Dakotas in the summmer....
     

  3. ladoodle

    ladoodle Member

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    I actually travelled in the middle of October, before the temperatures were too cold and before the snow hit. While I'm sure the summers are lovely, there was something striking about the land that autumn.
     
  4. nodak3

    nodak3 Well-Known Member Supporter

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    I prefer the western part of those states. Vast and beautiful, but not as pancake flat as the eastern parts. Winter can be harsh, but you learn to dress for it, adapt to it, and actually it is the busiest time both for outdoor sports and indoor social activities. I don't miss the brutal thunderstorms and tornados. Love the people, and the way of life is taylor made for homesteading. Low crime rate, low cost of living, and just generally wonderful. But the grandkids aren't there, so we left. (Real estate is low, as are wages.) Summers are hot and compared to Colorado, very very humid.
     
  5. BamaSuzy

    BamaSuzy Well-Known Member

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    I lived in Hot Springs at the edge of the Black Hills for a while back in 1995 and loved it there....there were signs in the bars that said, "Welcome to South Dakota, turn your clock back 25 years..."

    Although I don't usually frequent bars, this little town was the kind of town where you could go into any business and fell o.k. At least it was in 1995....

    I loved the atmosphere there, the people, the churches, everything....we did know of some problems with the school system there but the very first family we met when we got there were homeschoolers!!! so there is a thriving community of home schoolers....

    We were there during the filming of the Crazy Horse movie for TNT so I got to cover (I was working as a reporter then too) several things about the making of that movie; also got to cover several things at the Crazy Horse monument and at Mount Rushmore....

    The pay scale there seemed really low: TV reporters with degrees were starting out at not much more than minimum wage then so don't know if that has changed or not.....

    If you're looking for land you'll have to find somewhere that hasn't been bought up by the Ted Turners and other big outfits....and you'll need to find somewhere with some sort of water supply because water is really scarce on a lot of the places with people hauling water to cisterns....

    It takes a lot more land to support one cow, etc because of the type weather and area. I was there in summer (and it was REALLY HOT) and then when it started snowing on Sept. 22nd....One Halloween kids were trick or treating like nothing was wrong and it was FIVE BELOW and we had a big snow on the ground....but it was a dry kind of cold....it didn't affect me like the cold in Alabama....

    I moved back to Alabama that winter and nearly FROZE to death in the wet old hear....and while I was in South Dakota I only wore a little corduroy coat and jeans most of the time....

    It loved the land and the area and if Alabama hadn't been "home," I would probably still be out there....
     
  6. cwgrl23

    cwgrl23 Chief Vegtable Grower :) Supporter

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    I live in SouthEasteren SD. It is definetly not flat around here. We have rolling hills with some flat parts. The majority of the higher paying jobs are along the I-29 coridor. Alot depends on what you are looking for and if you will need a job or are s/e. I have lived in SD all my life all over the state of SD. Feel free to PM me with specific questions! :)



    PS It has been raining here for two days now. Non-stop for the last 24-36 hours and we are supposed to be like this for the next couple of days. On the up side it is 50 degrees out.
     
  7. nodak3

    nodak3 Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Sorry about the flat comment. Generally speaking, west river country is more broken shall we say than the east. Remember, I grew up with the Rockies in sight and live in them now, so, yeah, in comparison you are in flat country! Black Hills are taller than your rolling hills. However, the Killdeer Mountains are making a mountain out of a mole hill!!
     
  8. Barb

    Barb Well-Known Member

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    Rain - you have rain cowgirl? I knew someone was stealing it. :haha: I'm northwest SD and we are in our 4th year of drought. We got about 1/4 inch two days ago and were jumping up and down. It's real bad here.

    Cabin - I only had about 4 inches of snow total all winter - so there! :p Of course I won't tell you about the wind.

    The rural water line is coming past the house in a couple of weeks. I might even be able to water the garden a little with it when I run out of rain water (if there is any this year).
     
  9. bethlaf

    bethlaf Homegrown Family

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    i lived in North dakota for almost 2 years,
    it is nice in some aspects, its very rural , so you learn pretty quickly that you have to combine trips to just about anywhere with other things ,
    we lived 20+ miles from the closest gas station we lived outside Fullerton ND

    winters are long and harsh , our water froze 6 or 7 times, this is a serious problem when there are 20 goats, 6 horses and 4 humans, not to mention dogs cats and chickens who all are rather attatched to the idea of beign able to drink...

    it is not for the soical butterflies, if youre content to speak thru the net, and solely to your family for a week or two at a time , then yeah its ok ,

    would i move back .....
    no , i wouldnt, but for different reasons than the lonliness, i have SAD , and it wasnt a good place for me with the long winters and bitter cold ...
    its a goodp lace to homestead if youre tough ,
    remember you need more than 3x the acreage in the dakotas and plains than you do in hte more popular homesteading sites like the midwest and light southern parts of the country
    i wouldtn consider it with less than 40 acres , that being said, the farm we had was 20 acres , plus barns(3) and house and we bought it for 24k.
    so in that way it was a bargain

    figure out the income source before you go though , cause without off farm income, or major farm work , the homestead income streams just arent available to you, to think of a population