South Dakota State Parks
Custer State Park
Custer State Park in the Black Hills encompasses 71,000 acres of spectacular terrain and an abundance of wildlife.Within the park, you?ll discover a world of adventure! Favorite outdoor activities include hiking 7,242-foot Harney Peak, mountain biking, horseback riding, rock climbing, fishing, chuckwagon suppers and jeep rides to see the bison.
Fort Sisseton State Park
Walk the grounds where the officers’ quarters, stone barracks, powder magazine, guard house, and other buildings remain at frontier Fort Sisseton. This 1864 fort, atop the Coteau des Prairies (or hills of the prairies), is a rare reminder of the western frontier. The fort’s name comes from the nearby Sisseton Indian Tribe, and it is now a picturesque state park that unfolds the area’s history.
Hartford Beach State Park
Big Stone Lake provides the setting for this popular camping and picnic area nestled in the shade of a native wooded forest. Along the many hiking trails, you can observe wildlife, prairie plants and scenic vistas.
Lake Herman State Park
Located on a peninsula, Lake Herman State Park offers visitors spectacular views of Lake Herman. Melting glacial ice formed this 1,350-acre lake thousands of years ago. Now, camping, boating, fishing, and cross country skiing are favorite activities at the park. Wildlife observation is aided by the native oak woodlands and prairie grasses that blend to create a lush savanna in the natural areas of the park. Most of the trees are native, while others were planted to provide convenient camping and hiking areas, as well as provide habitat for the variety of birds and animals that live in the park.
Newton Hills State Park
Glaciers created this narrow strip of rolling hills and forest that is part of the geological formation called the Coteau des Prairie, which extends along the eastern boundary of South Dakota. At its highest point, the Coteau rises to more than 2,000 feet above sea level. Artifacts and burial mounds found near the park indicate that a Woodland Indian Culture inhabited this region between 300 B.C. and 900 A.D. The area’s unique dark forest, amidst a vast open prairie, has prompted many recent legends, including of buried gold, robbers’ hideouts and horse thieves.
Oakwood Lakes State Park
Nestled among eight connecting glacial lakes, this park provides a never-ending variety of activities throughout the year, from hiking and swimming, to ice fishing and cross-country skiing. Shaded campgrounds and picnic areas complement the park?s excellent swimming and boating facilities.
Union County State Park
Rich glacial soils supporting a lush growth of native woods is the scenic setting for this hidden treasure. Horseback riders, hikers, bikers and cross-country skiers enjoy several miles of trail through the forest along Brule Creek. The trees and plants attract a variety of birds sure to keep botanists and birdwatchers entertained for hours. Campers enjoy the quiet well-shaded campsites and the horse camp is the perfect base for a weekend of riding.