South Dakota outdoor opportunities go on and on from Hiking, rock climbing, mountain biking, kayaking, swimming, boating, jet skiing, hunting, fishing, bird watching, cross-country skiing, and snowshoeing. Your South Dakota outdoor adventure is waiting for you.


George S. Mickelson Trail

The premier trail within South Dakota's state park system, this 109-mile jewel stretches the length of the Black Hills. It follows an abandoned railroad bed, and climbs gently into jagged cliffs and pine forests. The Mickelson Trail has a crushed limestone surface and wide path. It tops out at 6,100 feet but rarely exceeds a 4-percent grade (making it perfect for leisure riders). Trestle bridges and railroad tunnels add to the trail's charm. You can start your adventure at any of 14 trailheads. There is a small user fee.

For a brochure, call (605) 773-3391 or visit .

State Park Trails

South Dakota's state parks are loaded with trails. Generally, fat-tire riders share track with hikers. Biking terrain ranges from open prairie to gravel river-bottom trails. Nine state parks and recreation areas also have designated horse trails that are great for fat-tire riding. The dirt trails at Sica Hollow cover 15 miles of steep, wooded ravine and flat prairie. Newton Hills, another popular fat-tire ride, offers six miles of trail through dense forest and grassland.

For information, call (605) 773-3391, or take a look at Game, Fish and Parks ' hiking and biking information.

Black Hills National Forest Trails

Hard-core mountain bikers love riding "The Hills." Nearly all of the 1.2-million-acre forest is open to bikers, except Black Elk Wilderness Area. Hiking trails often prove challenging courses. Take Crow Peak, near Spearfish. This hard-and-fast ascent covers 1,600 feet (via a series of switchbacks) in just 3.5 miles. The multipurpose Centennial Trail extends 111 miles with terrain ranging from dirt and grass to rocks and water. You'll encounter daunting climbs and sometimes daring descents on this rugged outing.

For information, call Black Hills National Forest at (605) 673-2251 or visit .

Sioux Falls Greenway

A paved 14-mile route, the Greenway Trail makes a sweeping loop around Sioux Falls. Portions of the trail follow the Big Sioux River. At Falls Park, you can view the city's namesake, the falls of the Big Sioux River, as they tumble over quartzite cliffs. The Greenway preserves a stretch of nature within the bustling metro area.

Yankton Biking Trail

This is a leisurely, beautiful ride along the Missouri River. The paved trail covers approximately 10 miles between the city of Yankton and nearby Lewis and Clark Recreation Area. Starting at Riverside Park in Yankton, you'll ride along Missouri River shoreline, wind through residential areas and across open fields, and end up back at the river. An alternate start – West Side Park in Yankton – skips much of the residential area.

Spearfish Canyon

Sheer limestone cliffs flank this 19-mile trek on U.S. Highway 14A through Spearfish Canyon. The route, which has been designated a National Forest Scenic Byway, winds its way through stunning mountain scenery. Bikers ride on paved highway and should be extremely cautious of traffic.

Tour de Oahe Bike Ride

The Tour de Oahe Bike Ride scheduled to be held at the Oahe Downstream Area north of Pierre on Saturday, July 9 is still on! Due to flooding, however, the location has been changed to the Americinn Hotel, Fort Pierre and the routes (19, 38 and 62 mile) will be somewhat modified. $25 entry fee includes two meals and refreshments. Please register by July 5. Details can be found at

Event Dates
Jul 08 - 09, 2011


Hiking By Region

Click on the Region to View Hiking Trail Details:

Hunting and Fishing


The Pierre area's numerous lakes and ponds boast extraordinary freshwater fishing in every season. Abundant, well managed populations of numerous species provide exciting fishing on hundreds of miles of shoreline on Lake Oahe and Lake Sharpe. Smaller ponds and lakes dot the nearby prairies and the Fort Pierre National Grassland, offering excellent fishing from shore and small craft. Successful ice fishing spans locations and species.

Business Address City State Phone Website
Brad Beeler Fishing Guide 430 Cow Creek Estates Pierre SD 605-264-5346
Chuck Krause Guide Service 2904 US Hwy 212 Gettysburg SD (605) 765-9765
Crooked Creek Outfitters, LLC 2302 Callaway Court Pierre SD (605) 280-7714
D&S Campground & Specialty Resort 103 Swan Creek Road Akaska SD (605) 229-1739
Dakota Walleye Guide Service 107 Dupree Trail Fort Pierre SD (605) 223-3186
Dave Spaid Guiding 215 Sunshine Loop Pierre SD (605) 224-5009
Oahe Marina and Resort 20422 Marina Loop Fort Pierre SD (605) 223-2627
Pike Haven Resort 27645 Pike Haven Place Pierre SD (605) 264-5465
Propst Professional Anglers 2505 E Pawn Street Pierre SD (605) 280-2495
Spring Creek Steakhouse and Lodge 28229 Spring Creek Place Pierre SD (605) 224-8336
The Last Resort 18923 Okobojo Avenue Pierre SD (605) 264-5451
The Outpost Lodge 28229 Cow Creek Road Pierre SD (605) 264-5450


From the shore of Lake Oahe to the prairies of the Fort Pierre National Grassland, the area surrounding Pierre and Fort Pierre boasts a rich diversity of big and small game. Hunting in the Pierre area is a sport nearly year-round, as it is throughout the state.

Business Address City State Phone Website
Bad River Bucks & Birds LLC 27619 Herman Ranch Draper SD (605) 669-3440
Broken Arrow Farms 1405 E Wells Avenue Pierre SD (605) 224-7580
Cedar Valley Pheasant Haven 32525 198th Street Harrold SD (605) 852-2363
Chuck Krause Guide Service 2904 US Hwy 212 Gettysburg SD (605) 765-9765
Crooked Creek Outfitters, LLC 2302 Callaway Court Pierre SD (605) 280-7714
D&S Campground & Specialty Resort 103 Swan Creek Road Akaska SD (605) 229-1739
Dave Spaid Guiding 215 Sunshine Loop Pierre SD (605) 224-5009
Garnos Ranch Hunts PO Box 119 Presho SD (605) 895-2414
Halverson Hunts, LLC PO Box 271 Kennebec SD (605) 224-6334
Pike Haven Resort 27645 Pike Haven Place Pierre SD (605) 264-5465
ScatterGun Lodge 21185 ScatterGun Ridge Road Pierre SD
Shur Shot Lodge, LLC 28810 245 B Street Vivian SD (605) 683-6635
Snake Den Lodge PO Box 220 Presho SD (605) 895-2452
Spring Creek Steakhouse and Lodge 28229 Spring Creek Place Pierre SD (605) 224-8336
The Grand Lodge 33686 SD Hwy 14 Highmore SD (605) 852-3200
The Last Resort 18923 Okobojo Avenue Pierre SD (605) 264-5451
The Outpost Lodge 28229 Cow Creek Road Pierre SD (605) 264-5450
Willow Creek Wildlife 20628 Willow Creek Road Fort Pierre SD (605) 223-3154

Rock Climbing

South Dakota may not be the first place that comes to mind for world class climbing, but few places are blessed with the amount of varied and classic climbing present in the Black Hills. The Needles in the southern hills is host to runout face climbing on impressively skinny spires, the largest of which can be 3-4 pitches long. Mt Rushmore is home to hundreds of well protected sport routes, and perhaps has the best concentration of memorable, high quality 5.6-5.9 sport routes on earth. Old Baldy near Mt Rushmore is the premier bouldering area in the hills - spectacular enough to inspire Kurt Smith's film: Friction Addiction: Black Hills Gold .

Moving north, the granite fades away to limestone canyons and the odd chunks of sandstone. Falling Rock near Rapid City provides a nice pump on vertical edgy limestone. The Rock Maze along Nemo Road has juggy steep sandstone bouldering, and few crowds. Rapid City sports good bouldering and toproping on sandstone outcrops in the center of town. There is also Victoria Canyon, just minutes outside Rapid City on Sheridan Lake Road; which hosts impressive limestone sport climbing.

The crown jewel of the northern hills is Spearfish Canyon, which has a huge concentration of high quality sport routes in the 5.10 - 5.13 range in a lovely canyon. In the winter, Spearfish Canyon has a number of good ice climbing routes as well. And lastly, just over the state line in Wyoming is the iconic, monolith, Devil's Tower.

Water Activities Near Pierre South Dakota

Great Lakes of South Dakota Tourism Association

The Great Lakes of South Dakota Association promotes tourism near and along the Missouri River in central South Dakota. Our free guide includes information on hunting, fishing, Lewis and Clark, Native American culture, lodging, restaurants, camping, canoeing, hiking and more.

Lake Herman State Park

Located two miles west of Madison off of S.D. Highway 34. The park includes an 1871 cabin and cemetery (the cabin is a designated National Historic Structure); trails through grass prairie, wetlands and historic sites; bird watching; and canoe/kayak rentals.

Sisseton Area

Sisseton offers three regional state parks, horseback riding, water sports on area lakes, public swimming pool, 9 hole golf course, mini golf, camp grounds, snowmobile trails, cross-country skiing, hunting, fishing, hiking, wildlife, bingo, gaming, native art, historic homes, hospital, airport, four motels and numerous restaurants.

Black Hills Adventure Tours

Rapid City, SD

Book a tour and start the adventure. We are your above average tour company. We offer top notch service in smaller vehicles for a personal touch. Choose from several tours throughout the Black Hills and Badlands region including the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation. Pick-up and drop-off at all local hotels and campgrounds. We also of-
fer soft adventure for the active travelers Including biking, hiking, and lake kayaking. Click here for tours offered.

Cow Creek State Recreation Area

Located 15 miles northwest of Pierre off of S.D. Highway 1804. On the eastern shore of Lake Oahe, the area is known for its hunting and fishing opportunities. There is also a golf course nearby. Water-lovers enjoy fishing, boating, or just watching the waves at Cow Creek. Both primitive shoreline camping and campground camping are available. The shoreline sites offer outstanding views of Oahe Resevoir while providing a great deal of privacy. Campsites in the campground have easy access to drinking water and restrooms/showers.

Wildlife Viewing

South Dakota Game Fish and Parks

Wildlife at Custer State Park

The area that encompasses Custer State Park was originally established as a Game Preserve back in 1913. Then-Governor Peter Norbeck's dream was to establish a large acreage within the Black Hills that would sustain the re-introduction of many of the wildlife species that had been eliminated by early gold seekers.

Today the park is home to over 1,300 free roaming bison (or buffalo), elk, big horn sheep, mountain goats, pronghorn antelope along with white-tail and mule deer.

Explore the park

The park offers a network of roads , both paved and gravel that provide visitors with access to much of the park and offers great opportunities to see wildlife in the natural setting. The best time to see most wildlife is early in the morning and late afternoon.

Visitors often see bison, pronghorn, white-tailed and mule deer, prairie dogs, eagles, hawks and a variety of other birds.


On the southeast part of the loop, the Wildlife Station Visitor Center gives visitors shade and information on wildlife and outdoor habitats.

Winter Activities

Downhill skiing. South Dakota isn't exactly a skier's Mecca, there are some great slopes in the Black Hills, including Terry Peak and Deer Mountain. The mostly flat eastern part of South Dakota has Great Bear, a skiing facility near Sioux Falls.

Snowmobiling. Is an activity that can be enjoyed pretty much anywhere in the state. In the east, there are plenty of wide-open spaces where snowmobilers can open up the throttle. In the Black Hills on the state's west side, there is a fantastic system of scenic trails that snowmobilers can spend days exploring. For more information on trails, go to Black Hills Snowmobile Rentals click here for trails click here.

Cross-country skiing. There are some great trails in South Dakota's state parks, you can explore at

Ice fishing. If you've never done this you must try it. Drive by a thickly frozen lake or even river in South Dakota from mid- to late-winter, and you'll see shacks out on the ice.

Great Bear Recreation Park

Winter Activities
Great Bear Ski Valley in Sioux Falls is the #1 hotspot for winter sports in Eastern South Dakota. It's a place your whole family can enjoy, with everything from downhill and cross country skiing to snowboarding, tubing and snow-shoeing--just three miles from Sioux Falls.

Great Bear offers 14 downhill trails, a custom-built beginner area and a full snowboard terrain park. If you're not into skiing or snowboarding, go old school, at the Kirby Family Tubing Park. Four lanes of thrills and chills, and no more walking up the hill, since the Park is outfitted with a custom-built surface-lift system.

Summer Fun
Great Bear Recreation Park is a unique geological feature referred to as a Loess Mountain Range. This 220-acre park, the largest in the Sioux Falls Park and Recreation Department, is a wonderful example of the glacial deposit areas common to this region.

The Ralph and Doris Wallin Nature Trail winds through the hills and valleys of the park, offering hikers spectacular views of Sioux Falls as well as secluded Burr Oak canopied creek bottoms. This 6 kilometer trail system has three distinct loops ranging from an ADA rated hard surfaced trail for those seeking a leisurely stroll through the park to the more demanding primitive deer trails for those wishing a more backcountry experience.

Terry Peak Ski Area

With vertical rise of 1100 feet and elevations over 7,000 feet, more snow falls on Terry Peak than anywhere else in the region and exceeds predictions by up to three times at Terry Peak! And with a high-tech Terry Peak snowmaking system covering 60% of the mountain, good conditions are assured from the beginning to the end of the season. New this year is the Gold Corp Express, Terry Peaks third high speed quad chair lift.

Mavericks Recreation Equipment Rentals

Campers, RVS, trailers, snowmobiles, motorcycles, boats, ATV's and hunting and water accessories are all for rent. They also have a golf simulator and guided hunting and fishing trips.











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