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Recreation & Outdoors

Recreation and Outdoors

The Black Hills region has a reputation that’s etched in stone.  It is one of top tourist centers in the nation making it a great place to carve out your future. The mountains and forests of the Black Hills include a bounty of six national parks with over 101 miles of National Scenic Byways.  You can easily navigate your way to these great monuments by visiting our Black Hills Maps page!


Points of interest and recreational opportunities include:

·         National and State Park Monuments and Memorials--  Badlands, Crazy Horse Memorial, Custer State Park, Devils Tower, Jewel Cave, Mickelson Trail, Minuteman Missile National Historic Site, Mount Rushmore, and Wind CaveMount Rushmore National Memorial

·         Golfing--Black Hills golf courses twist deep into pine forests, cross rushing trout streams and open up to distractingly spectacular mountain vistas. Many Black Hills golf courses, including Southern Hills Golf Course in Hot Springs, Devils Tower Golf in Hulett, Wyo. and Hart Ranch Golf Course in Rapid City have been listed by Golf Digest among the top courses in America.

·         Skiing--The Rushmore Region has two downhill ski areas: 

o   Mystic Miner Ski Resort

o   Terry Peak

Cross-country ski areas include Eagle Cliff, Big Hill, Beaver Creek and Bear Mountain. Snowshoeing is popular throughout the Black Hills.

·         Fishing--The Black Hills are known for their mountain lakes and fresh-water streams brimming with brook, brown and rainbow trout. On the surrounding prairie, reservoirs and ranch stock dams are full of largemouth bass, northern pike and a variety of pan fish. The best fishing waters are located at: Deerfield Reservoir and Pactola Reservoir; Stockade Lake, Sheridan Lake, Rapid Creek, French Creek, Spearfish Creek, Spring Creek and Castle Creek. Most waters are stocked and the fishing season never closes in South Dakota. For fishing license and regulation information visit the South Dakota Game Fish and Parks website.

·         Hiking--The Black Hills National Forest has 450 miles of hiking trails ranging in length and difficulty. Check out the trail guide here or obtain a copy of the Recreation Guide at the nearest Forest Service office to help you choose which area to explore. For backpackers, the Centennial Trail will take you to some of the most isolated backcountry spots in the Black Hills.

·         Biking--The 110-mile Mickelson Trail, a rails-to-trails project, runs from Deadwood to Edgemont. It offers some of the best bicycling in the United States.  The Dakota Five-O is the largest mountain bike event in the area bringing riders from all over the country.

·         Camping-- Black Hills National Forest has 30 campgrounds, Custer State Park has 13. In addition there are scores of private campgrounds and RV parks scattered throughout the region. The variety ranges from full-service RV resorts such as the Palmer Gulch KOA to the bare-bones sites such as the French Creek Natural Area.