Custer State Park

Custer State Park South Dakota – Travel Plan

Few actually wild locations stay on this nation. Custer State Park is one in all of them. Almost 1,300 bison wander the park’s 71,000 acres, which they share with pronghorn antelope, elk, mountain goats, and a band of burros.

Path rides, scenic drives, bike rides, and safari excursions are good methods to discover this spectacular South Dakota attraction. In this article, I am going to overview on Custer State Park camping, Sylvan Lake, South Dakota, Legion Lake, map, cabins, weather, buffalo roundup, trails, wildlife loop, etc.

Custer State Park: About

Custer State Park is a South Dakota State Park and wildlife reserve within the Black Hills, United States. The park is South Dakota’s largest and first state park, named after Lt. Colonel George Armstrong Custer.

The world initially began out as sixteen sections, however, was later became one block of land due to the challenges of the terrain.[2] The park started to develop quickly within the 1920s and gained new land.

In the course of the 1930s, the Civilian Conservation Corps constructed miles of roads, laid out parks and campgrounds, and constructed three dams that arrange a way forward for water recreation in the park.

In 1964 a further 22,900 acres (93 km2) have been added to the park. The park covers a space of over 71,000 acres (287 km2) of hilly terrain and is house to many wild animals.

Custer State Park within the Black Hills encompasses 71,000 acres of spectacular terrain and an abundance of wildlife. Inside the park, you?ll, uncover a world of the journey!

Favorite outside actions embrace climbing 7,242-foot Harney Peak, mountain biking, horseback driving, mountain climbing, fishing, chuckwagon suppers and jeep rides to see the bison.

The park boasts scenic drives such because the Needles Freeway (SD 87), which twists and turns it’s well past towering rock formations and thru slim tunnels.

On the finish of 1 tunnel stands the Needles Eye, a granite spire with a slit solely three to four toes extensive however reaching 30 to 40 toes within the air.

Historical past and tradition additionally abound. Stroll the banks of French Creek, the place Custer?s expedition first found gold in 1874.

Absorb a theater efficiency on the Black Hills Playhouse. Or, go to the log cabin that was house to Badger Clark, South Dakota?s first poet laureate.

The park is house to a well-known herd of 1500 free-roaming bison.[3] Elk, coyotes, mule deer, white-tailed deer, mountain goats, prairie canine, bighorn sheep, river otters, pronghorn, cougars, and feral burros additionally inhabit the park.

The park is known for its surroundings, its scenic drives (Needles Freeway and the wildlife loop), with views of the bison herd and prairie canine cities.

This park is well accessible by highway from Speedy Metropolis. Different close by sights is Wind Cave Nationwide Park, Mount Rushmore, Jewel Cave Nationwide Monument, Loopy Horse Memorial, and Badlands Nationwide Park.

Annual bison roundup

The park has an annual bison roundup and public sale in September, during which the bison within the park (greater than 1,000) are rounded up, with a number of hundred bought at public sale in order that the remaining variety of animals might be appropriate with the rangeland forage.

The annual roundups started in 1965; greater than 10,000 folks now attend every one.[4]


The Peter Norbeck Heart is listed on the Nationwide Register of Historic Locations and is situated on U.S. Route 16A in Custer.

Displays deal with the park’s pure historical past and cultural heritage and embrace wildlife dioramas, a CCC bunkhouse, and a gold prospecting show.

The middle is known as for South Dakota Governor and Senator Peter Norbeck. Most of the park’s naturalist packages start in the middle.

Badger Gap, also called Badger Clark Historic Web site, was the house of Charles Badger Clark (1883–1957), who was named South Dakota’s first Poet Laureate in 1937 and was famous for his cowboy poetry.

The home is maintained because it was when Clark lived there. Guests can tour the house and hike the adjoining Badger

Clark Historic Trail

Opened in Might of 2016, Custer State Park’s customer middle provides friends a plethora of data on the animals of the park, in addition to the chance to view a 20-minute movie detailing the historical past and structure of the park.

Begging Burros

Begging Burros is a reputation used to confer with the donkeys in Custer State Park.

For a few years, these donkeys have earned this nickname as they method varied passing vehicles by way of the park begging for meals.

After incomes this fame, the burros have change into well-known, now garnering the eye of most vacationers by way of the park inside and out of doors of vehicles.

Many individuals deliver meals to the park particularly for the aim of feeding these animals.

The Begging Burros inhabit one space of the park upon a hill the place roughly 15 of them attempt to get hold of any meals they will.

Custer State Park’s roadway is commonly blocked off by these animals, so it’s suggested to train warning and endurance when encountering them.


Custer State Park doesn’t have the fundamental one-room tenting cabins which are obtainable in a number of the different state parks. Different kinds of cabins, historic lodge rooms, and motel items can be found.

Custer State Park


Custer State Park can function the headquarters to your Black Hills keep. You’ll discover Resorts at Sylvan Lake, Legion Lake, Blue Bell, and the State Recreation Lodge, all situated throughout the park.

Every resort has its personal taste, starting from the stately Recreation Lodge, which is listed on the Nationwide Register of Historic Locations, to the mini dude ranch at Blue Bell. (See Black Hills part and Statewide Providers Listing for particulars.)


Campgrounds provide quite a lot of scenic websites. Arrange camp alongside a flowing stream, within the midst of pine forest, or close to a mountain lake.

The selection is yours! Tenting charges vary from $13-18 per unit. None have hookups.


Custer State Park?s 71,000 acres provide a lifetime of climbing alternatives. Moreover, the designated trails described on this info, climbing is allowed anyplace in Custer State Park.

Some areas could also be posted closed attributable to useful resource administration considerations.

Different Path Actions: Mountain biking is allowed in Custer State Park, some areas could also be posted closed for useful resource administration considerations.

A brochure describing biking alternatives could also be discovered on the Customer Facilities.

Horseback driving is allowed in most areas of Custer State Park, besides in these areas posted which embrace the Sylvan Lake watershed and the Grace Coolidge Stroll-in Fishing Space.

Different areas could also be posted closed attributable to useful resource administration considerations. A map of marked horse trails could also be discovered on the Customer Facilities.

Nature Applications

The park provides many instructional packages and household actions. For instance, park rangers lead guided nature walks and gold-panning excursions.

Dwelling-history demonstrations, equivalent to candle making and woodworking, happen on the Gordon Stockade. Night campfire packages characteristic slide exhibits, outdoor-cooking demonstrations, and movies.

For the children, the Junior Naturalist Program teaches them in regard to the outdoor by way of hands-on actions.

Area Campgrounds

Heritage Village
24829 Village Avenue
Crazy Horse, SD

Beaver Lake Campground
12005 West Highway 16
Custer, SD

Big Pine Campground
12084 Big Pine Road
Custer, SD

Broken Arrow Campground
Flynn Creek Road
Custer, SD

Custer/Crazy Horse Campground
1116 North 5th Street
Custer, SD

Custer Mt. Rushmore KOA
12021 US Hwy 16
Custer, SD

Custers Gulch Campground
25112 Golden Valley Road
Custer, SD

Echo Valley Park Campground
RR 2 Box 202J
Custer, SD

Flintstone’s Bedrock City Campground
232 Mt. Rushmore Road
Custer, SD

Fort Welikit Family Campground
24992 Sylvan Lake Road
Custer, SD

French Creek RV Park
144 South 4th Street
Custer, SD

Horse Thief Resort
24391 Highway 87
Hill City, SD

Mt. Rushmore/Hill City KOA
12620 Highway 244
Hill City, SD

Kemps Kamp
1022 Old Hill City Road
Keystone, SD

Spokane Creek Campground
24631 Iron Mountain Road
Keystone, SD

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