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Any suggestions or changes to our Black Hills trip?

Kansas City area
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Any suggestions or changes to our Black Hills trip?

I've been pouring over this forum trying to put together a do-able itinerary for our trip coming up. My husband and I are driving up with our 8 yo daughter and 5 yo son. If you don't mind taking a look, please let me know if you see any problems or suggestions! I have a couple things with ????, not sure if we should fit them in or not. Thanks so much, we are really looking forward to this vacation.

Day 1

Drive to Sioux Falls and sleep (need inexpensive hotel to crash one night in if you have suggestions)

Day 2

Drive to Rapid City

Circle B Chuck Wagon Dinner

Day 3

Bear Country

Reptile Gardens

Dinosaur Park

WaTiki indoor water park ????

Day 4

Drive to Hot Springs

Wind Cave

Mammoth Site / Jr. Paleontolgy Program

Wild Horse Sanctuary ????

Day 5

Drive to Custer

President's Alpine Slide

Mount Rushmore & Evening show

Keystone Boardwalk/shops/putt putt

Day 6

Jewel Cave

Crazy Horse

Cosmos ????

Day 7

Drive to Deadwood

Broken Boot Gold Mine

Old Style Saloon #10

Adams House/Museum ????

Mount Moriah Cementery ????

Rodeo

Day 8

Custer State Park

Wild Life Loop

Needles Highway

Buffalo Safari Ride

Blue Bell Horse Back Riding

Day 9

Drive to Badlands then Mitchell

Badlands

Wall Drug Store

Corn Palace

Day 10

Drive home and rest!

Atlanta, Georgia
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for Road Trips
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1. Re: Any suggestions or changes to our Black Hills trip?

Where are you staying? The towns of Keystone, Hill City and Custer are more centrally located or are you driving each day from Rapid City?

Kansas City area
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2. Re: Any suggestions or changes to our Black Hills trip?

We are staying 2 nights in Rapid City, 1 night in a TeePee, 3 nights in Custer, 1 night in Custer State Park and then in Mitchell on the way home. So we are moving around, but still centrally located for the most part I hope

Pitman, New Jersey
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for Rapid City, South Dakota
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3. Re: Any suggestions or changes to our Black Hills trip?

Hi Stacy,

You have done a very good job putting this together. You are going to have a great vacation.

I will try to handle some of your ?? attractions. Unfortunately, some I have not experienced, including the Watiki Waterpark & Mt Moriah Cemetery. I would highly recommend keeping the Adams House and museum in the itinerary. We had a wonderful tour guide with whom we keep in touch with to this day. Our 8 year old daughter (at the time) helped him give the tour, and had a wonderful way with children. Your entire family will enjoy the tour, I think. We visited the Wild Horse Sanctuary, and although the tours are pricey, we found it worthwhile. I don't know what the current rates are, but I believe the prices have gone up since we visited. It was definitely the most expensive thing we did, but we liked the fact the tours were small and personalized. We only had one other couple on our tour. You might find it just too pricey for a family of 4, but we really liked being up close with the mustangs. Plus, it's very close to the Mammoth Site. This is a great place for the kids!

I have also never been to the Cosmos, but quite a few families have reviewed it on here and most have enjoyed it. You could cut it out if you run short of time.

Make sure you drive Iron Mountain Rd, which is part of Custer SP. The pigtail bridges and tunnels that frame Rushmore are neat. Also, if time permits, you and the kids might enjoy the 1880 train ride between Hill city and Keystone. While in Hill City, be sure to check out Everything Prehistoric, a small dinosaur museum (includes gems and minerals also) and dinosaur gift shop. I also highly recommend taking the kids to Sylvan Lake in Custer SP. It's a great place to explore, and the kids will want to climb on the rocks. It's also a great picnic spot.

If you decide to take out Watiki water park, you can consider adding Putz and Glo, an indoor mini golf course with glow in the dark features. This was a lot of fun for us.

I hope this is helpful. Please post a report when you return so we can hear about your travels. Have fun!

Atlanta, Georgia
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4. Re: Any suggestions or changes to our Black Hills trip?

We went to Mt. Moriah cemetery in Deadwood. It is a keeper and doesn't take long to see. The newspaper you get at the entrance is very informative.

Minnesota
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5. Re: Any suggestions or changes to our Black Hills trip?

You might look at the Microtel Inn at Sioux Falls.

Illinois
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253 reviews
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6. Re: Any suggestions or changes to our Black Hills trip?

My first thought was that you should see the Badlands on Day 2 but then I see that you have that on Day 9, which also works. I do think you might want to throw something onto Day 2--it's only about 5 hours from Sioux Falls to Rapid City and your kids will probably be ready for something fun, even if it's quick, to break up two days of driving. If you did Wall Drug on Day 2 that would give you more time in the Badlands on Day 9. I'm also not sure what time you're planning on getting into Mitchell or how late the Corn Palace is open, but that could also be a quick stop on Day 2.

On your way to Rapid City from Sioux Falls be sure to stop at the rest area at Chamberlain. Beautiful views of the Missouri River and the changing landscape and a neat Lewis and Clark exhibit inside.

Illinois
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7. Re: Any suggestions or changes to our Black Hills trip?

Me again--regarding hotels:

Our past trips we have also stayed in Sioux Falls and have stayed at the Ramada, Motel 6, BW Ramkota, Comfort Inn, and Country Inn. However, as it has been a few years I'm reluctant to recommend anything. However, in checking prices this year we decided to drive an hour further and are staying in Mitchell for both our first and last nights and I was able to book the Best Western there for $50/night (prepay 7 days cancellation--of which I've yet to be charged and we leave in 8 days). It's rated decently on this site and looks totally adequate for the price and for a place to crash. I'll post an updated review when we get back but if you're going before then (we'll be back August 6th) I guess that won't help.

Bend, Oregon
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8. Re: Any suggestions or changes to our Black Hills trip?

We are currently 14th is Custer South Dakota and have been for one week now. Here are my thoughts simply based on our experience of the last week.We are travling in motorhome and staying three miles out of Custer S.D. We have been in Custer State Park each day and its amazing! your children will love it and our favorite part has been WildLife Loop.Keep in mind the park is 71000 acres and in my opinion in sections. You will love all of it.

We went via the park today and drove to Wind Cave. Just a note from what we experienced. The drive there is worth the trip alone, however it was extremely crowded and its first come first serve for the caves tours, which begin at 8a.m. We were there early afternoon and they were turning people away as they had booked fulled.

Hope any of this would be helpful, its our first time here and will not be our last. The people of South Dakota are some of the friendliest.

We drove from Custer to Badlands National Park, then to Wall, SD and back to Custer, great trip and long day. The Badlands were stunning a couple of days ago due to all the rain of late.

Have a great and safe trip and hope some of this info may be helpful.

The Safari tours I believe due Wildlife Loop and we saw them leaving from State Game Lodge area.

9. Re: Any suggestions or changes to our Black Hills trip?

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