Every vacation (I call mine photations) offers a multitude of photography opportunities including this one taken with my Nikon D60 at Mount Rushmore, South Dakota in 2011.  The presidents who live forever on in portrait at Mount Rushmore are pictured from left to right; George Washington (1732–1799), Thomas Jefferson (1743–1826), Theodore Roosevelt (1858–1919), and Abraham Lincoln (1809–1865).  Years before this picture was take, a photographer was able to get much closer to the monument, but there is now security and fences keeping us back

Four Presidents Glorified beyond their lifetime.
Four Presidents Glorified beyond their lifetime.

The monument was sculpted by a Danish-American named Gutzon Borglum and finished by his son, Lincoln Borglum after Gutzon’s death.  Mount Rushmore features 60-foot (18 m) sculptures of the presidents heads while the entire memorial covers  1,278.45 acres (5.17 km2).

I’ve also uploaded the larger 2881 x 1806 image to SmugMug Link SmugMug if you would like to see the larger image or are interested in purchasing for your own use.  Additionally, here are the camera settings for the larger image on SmugMug:

ISO 140
Focal Length 55mm (82mm in 35mm)
Aperture f/10
Exposure Time 0.004s (1/250)
Name Montument1LG.jpg
Size 2881 x 1806
Date Taken 2011-07-21 04:03:31
Date Modified 2014-04-12 11:41:10

For those interested in learning more,  the following is an excerpt from the Mount Rushmore website on Wikipedia:
South Dakota historian Doane Robinson is credited with conceiving the idea of carving the likenesses of famous people into the Black Hills region of South Dakota in order to promote tourism in the region. Robinson’s initial idea was to sculpt the Needles; however, Gutzon Borglum rejected the Needles site because of the poor quality of the granite and strong opposition from Native American groups. They settled on the Mount Rushmore location, which also has the advantage of facing southeast for maximum sun exposure. Robinson wanted it to feature western heroes like Lewis and Clark, Red Cloud, and Buffalo Bill Cody, but Borglum decided the sculpture should have a more national focus and chose the four presidents whose likenesses would be carved into the mountain. After securing federal funding through the enthusiastic sponsorship of “Mount Rushmore’s great political patron,” U.S. Senator Peter Norbeck, construction on the memorial began in 1927, and the presidents’ faces were completed between 1934 and 1939. Upon Gutzon Borglum’s death in March 1941, his son Lincoln Borglum took over construction. Although the initial concept called for each president to be depicted from head to waist, lack of funding forced construction to end in late October 1941.

Mount Rushmore has become an iconic symbol of presidential greatness and has appeared in works of fiction, and has been discussed or depicted in other popular works. It attracts nearly three million people annually.


  1. Nice picture and write-up. I will have to go there some day, maybe next year.

    1. Hope you are able to make the visit. I wish I hadn’t waited so long.

  2. This is one very impressive monument and you’ve captured it quite nicely. My first glimpse of it was truly breathtaking.

    1. I wish I hadn’t waited so long to go there so that it wasn’t fenced in so I could have stepped in closer.

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