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Hill City to Devil's Tower to Denver

SF Bay Area
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667 posts
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Hill City to Devil's Tower to Denver

We'll be staying in Hill City for the duration of our four-day visit. I'd like to visit Devil's Tower. Would it be better to make a day trip out of it on one of those four days, or to take a longer route back to Denver and see it? I really don't want to drive anymore than I have to, btw. It will be just me and my 12-yr old son - so stopping at casinos is not on the agenda.

Thanks!

Lebanon, Oregon
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1. Re: Hill City to Devil's Tower to Denver

I would make a day trip to drive the Spearfish Canyon Scenic Drive, Devils Tower and Deadwood.

Rapid City, SD
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2. Re: Hill City to Devil's Tower to Denver

You're looking at 9-10 hours of driving plus the time you'll spend at the Tower.

And, yes, Spearfish Canyon is an excellent road between Hill City and Devils Tower. If you just drove through, plan on an extra 45 minutes or so.

SF Bay Area
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3. Re: Hill City to Devil's Tower to Denver

Thanks all. I've heard that you can't actually go to the top of the Tower but what can you do there for the couple of hours that I would spend? I don't want to go just to take a picture and continue on our way.

alta
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4. Re: Hill City to Devil's Tower to Denver

what else to do there? interact with prairie dogs, watch repellers, listen for crys of on-bilet from lofty scalers, walk around the tower (takes about 15 minutes) visit the vistors center, take a side trip SE about 17 miles to beautiful Cook Lake (add an hour) and have picnic lunch, bird watch, drive the rolling countryside keeping continual view of the tower, have a bite to eat in Sundance, drive south 20 miles of Sundance and see Inyan Kara Mountain (alias Brokeback), loop back into the Hills through New Castle.

Rapid City, SD
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5. Re: Hill City to Devil's Tower to Denver

You'll at least want to walk the paved trail around the tower. It's about a mile. I like the 3 mile loop around the tower.

The Park Service's website has all the info.

It's not much different from Mt. Rushmore becasue you can go there, take a photo and leave or you can find yourself spending hours.

Genesee, CO
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6. Re: Hill City to Devil's Tower to Denver

I just got back from there. We drove up from spearfish and spent our first night there, and then did it it the next morning. It was probably a three hour detour out of our route heading on up to ND from spearfish (would be a similar detour going back to Denver). The drive through spearfish canyon is beautiful, but so are the drives through Custer State Park nearer hill city.

As for devil's tower, it was cool to see and to hike right up at the base of it. However, what time of year are you going? We were there in June and they have the voluntary climbing restrictions on in respect of native americans, but i think if you brought a pair of binoculars along in a month when there are climbers it would be a lot of fun for your son to watch them climbing. We probably spent an hour between looking at prarie dogs, walking up to the base and a little ways around and the visitor center, and the obligatory pictures.

SF Bay Area
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7. Re: Hill City to Devil's Tower to Denver

Really good info - I love Trip Advisor!

We'll be there at the end of July. I think I now have an idea of what to do and see, and thanks Accommodator for pointing me to the website.

8. Re: Hill City to Devil's Tower to Denver

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