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Google Keeps Sending Mount Rushmore Tourists to the Wrong Place

“Your GPS is WRONG,” says a sign at Storm Mountain Center.

The real Mount Rushmore.

The real Mount Rushmore. (Photo: Dean Franklin/CC BY 2.0)

South Dakota’s Storm Mountain Center has a lot going for it—rock climbing, an abandoned gold mine, a United Methodist church. But there’s one feature it definitively lacks: the craggy, carved faces of George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, Theodore Roosevelt, and Abraham Lincoln.

This doesn’t seem to bother Google Maps. According to the Argus Leader, a bug in the software has been routing would-be Mount Rushmore tourists to the far smaller Storm Mountain Center, which is a dozen miles northeast of the popular site. “It seems to think one of the nearby hills is Mount Rushmore,” Storm Mountain center guest services manager Ashley Wilsey told the Leader.

While a search for “Mount Rushmore National Memorial” leads travelers to the right spot, the less specific “Mt. Rushmore, South Dakota” sends them to Storm Mountain. This has been happening on and off for five years, says Wilsey. Every time Google fixes the glitch, it eventually re-glitches. It seems it’s back again—last Tuesday, Wilsey had to turn five full cars of tourists around.

 

google map has a little problem with their GPS for Mount Rushmore. We have resorted to posting a sign. Some folks are…

Posted by Storm Mountain Center on Tuesday, March 22, 2016

Anticipating further problems, Storm Mountain officials recently installed a sign at the beginning of the camp’s driveway. “Your GPS is WRONG,” it reads. “This is NOT Mt. Rushmore.”

Those who persevere through the warning signs laugh it off when they realize their mistake. A few, though, remain undeterred: “Some people are very insistent that this is where Mount Rushmore should be,” Wilsey says.

Thanks to reader Anna Wilson for the tip!

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