South Dakota

Travel Guide

Published in the February 2013 Issue White Out & Wide Open—The Blog

The Black Hills gradually rise off the South Dakota prairie, creating an island of mountains on the western edge of the state and spilling over into the eastern edge of Wyoming.

This “island” of mountains is part of the 1.2-million acre Black Hills National Forest and covers an area roughly 125 miles from north to south and 65 miles east to west. Elevations range from 3,200 feet to 7,000. That helps make the Black Hills the most significant mountain range between the Mississippi River and the West.

The Black Hills feature 350 miles—40 of which are in Wyoming—of groomed trails and unlimited off-trail opportunities. The snowmobiling season for the Black Hills is Dec. 15 through March 31.

The extensive trail system can be accessed from numerous parking areas spread out over South Dakota and Wyoming. Trails stretch from Lead, Deadwood and just south of Spearfish in the north to near the Crazy Horse Memorial and Custer State Park in the south and from near Galena in the east to close to Buckhorn in eastern Wyoming.

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