Mount Rushmore is one of the most popular monuments in the US attracting a normal annual visitorship of over 3 million in pre-pandemic times. Every summer, Mount Rushmore generally receives a flood of visitors. But when they arrive, they are frequently shocked.
Despite popular belief, the sculpture of the four US presidents is not as big as it appears in photographs. It’s challenging to distinguish facial details when looking at the monument from the observation platform.
Photos from the Fourth of July fireworks display at the monument, which President Donald Trump controversially chose to host over the weekend, revealed how tiny the carved faces appeared from the crowds.
Mount Rushmore Disappointing Photo Shows How Small The Monument Is In Reality
Under the direction of architect Gutzon Borglum, Mount Rushmore was constructed between 1927 and 1941 with the intention of promoting tourism in the West. Before the monument was constructed, proponents of a large sculpture in the area suggested sculpting the faces of regional heroes, such as Buffalo Bill Cody, Sioux chief Red Cloud, William Clark, and Meriwether Lewis
But Borglum chose to sculpt four presidents in order to increase the monument’s appeal to the whole public.
The monument, however, is not as intimidating in person as it may appear in photographs.
Along with the sculpture itself, the national monument features hiking trails, a visitor center, a café, a sculptor’s studio, a children’s play area, and the Lakota, Nakota, and Dakota Heritage Village, which highlights the region’s long heritage of Native Americans.
George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, Theodore Roosevelt, and Abraham Lincoln’s heads are ominously sized in the sculpture pictures that we have seen. It’s challenging to identify each face’s true appearance from a distance.
Though significantly variable in stature, they are all around 60 feet tall. However, from the visitor observation platform, it is challenging to determine its true scope.
About 400 people worked on its construction over the course of 14 years, mostly with dynamite.
The distance between the rock face and the Grand View Terrace is around 700 feet. You have to travel along the Presidential Trail, which is still more than 300 feet away, to get as close as you can.
Many people complain about how unimpressive the monument appears in reality. According to Thrillist, there are numerous TripAdvisor sites with complaints about the “disappointing” scale of the monument. The monument seems like a large tourist attraction in pictures.
However, to get a good view from a distance and to see the details well, you must navigate through a crowd of people in real life.
In the summer, Mount Rushmore is crowded with visitors who want to snap pictures of the monument.
The sculpture is approximately 80 years old and continually acquires new cracks that require fixing.
The granite cracks as a result of frequent water seepage and freezing in the mountain’s crevices. The National Park Service had to do annual repairs because 144 cracks were found along the monument in 2008 alone.