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South Dakota, Black Hills National Forest

Discussion in 'Central – From Da Nort Woods to the Plane States' started by KennyV, Dec 2, 2019.

  1. KennyV

    KennyV Been here awhile

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    Mar 28, 2011
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    Republic of Floyd, Va
    Hi all, I'm thinking about a trip to the Deadwood area this summer. I'm planning to do some riding exploring the Black Hills National Forest. Does anyone here know what I should expect for access to forest service roads in the Deadwood area? Thanks much for any and all help! Kenny
    #1
  2. InRoostWeTrust

    InRoostWeTrust Adventurer

    Joined:
    Jun 4, 2014
    Oddometer:
    76
    Start reading...

    https://www.fs.usda.gov/activity/blackhills/recreation/ohv

    Its an awesome area, and once you have your motor vehicle permit, you can go pretty much anywhere you want to go.

    Download the maps too and use in your GPS or smartphone's Avenza Map app... super easy and great to see/know where you are going.

    Lots of rocks...

    Roost! IMG_20170820_133448480_HDR.jpg
    #2
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  3. Too Tall

    Too Tall Been here awhile

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    Oct 25, 2005
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    Location:
    Black Hills, SD
    InRoost makes excellent suggestions. Not sure what type of riding you're looking for but I'd avoid Sturgis Week.
    #3
  4. Gerken

    Gerken If you think adventures are dangerous, try routine Supporter

    Joined:
    Jun 11, 2007
    Oddometer:
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    Location:
    Sterling Illinois
    I am a flatlander and have been to the area 2 years now. The first year solo at a primitive National Forest campground near Nemo and last year with a small group in a cabin at Whispering Pines Resort. Our cabin was a bit dated but comfy, clean and affordable. We had easy access to a variety of trail options, the Pactola Reservoir is nearby as well as the Sugar Shack. InRoost is dead on with the digital map thing. They are so nice to have as often you may wish to alter your plan due to a trail closure, weather or difficult trail. We use them on a Garmin unit. The maps are accurate, work great and although you may not be where you want to be you are never lost if you use the Forest Service digital map. If you get your vehicle permit at a Ranger Station (we always stop in Rapid City) it will come with a trail worthy printed map for a bigger view to plan your rides. We ride plated dirt bikes so an added permit allows legal travel just about anywhere. Yes there are rocks, all kinds of rocks so be prepared for them. Last year some of the single track had just been opened due to relentless storms and to say the gnar factor was elevated is being kind. Again, be prepared for steep hills, loose rocks, step ups and switchbacks. Oh, and UTV's and ATV's. They rule out there. On my solo trip I took the dirt bike and an adventure bike. Beat myself up on some single track for a few days then cruised the area on the big bike. It is a beautiful area and if you have never been there all the usual highlights you hear of are worth exploring. I always throw together some GPS tracks for the day that usually get altered but it helps to have a basic plan. I have always been out that one to two weeks before Sturgis and talking with the locals they agree it's a great time to be there. All the services are geared up for the masses and have yet to increase prices, plus no crowds or lines at the fuel station. On my big bike ride I never ran across a dirt or gravel road that I found to be impassable if that is your choice of adventures. Good times out there, I highly recommend a trip.
    #4
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  5. KennyV

    KennyV Been here awhile

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    Thanks ya'll for all the good information! I'm old and riding solo so I'm sticking to dirt / gravel forest service type roads. I'll be bringing my F650GS Dakar and one of my vintage Yamaha Enduros. Thanks again!
    #5
  6. PR61

    PR61 old noob

    Joined:
    Dec 26, 2017
    Oddometer:
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    Location:
    Central Illinois
    In June of 2018 I spent 5 days riding gravel back roads from Custer to Sturgis, solo on my DR650. Absolutely love it there. They say only 2percent of the Black Hills are paved and I'm sure that's true. Easy gravel everywhere. I'd love to go back with a group and take my KTM 500 for more dual sport riding.
    An excellent destination !!
    #6
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  7. Gerken

    Gerken If you think adventures are dangerous, try routine Supporter

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    Sterling Illinois
    #7
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  8. KennyV

    KennyV Been here awhile

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    Thanks much! More good information, very much appreciated!
    #8
  9. wbbnm

    wbbnm Long timer

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    You might want to look into the Dakota Adventure Loop (DAKAL) to get some ideas.

    https://www.dakotaadventureloop.com/

    The full loop is about 900 and miles and takes several days. But you could look at the tracks and pick those around DW that look attractive.
    One of the best rides is a ~6 mile segment heading south out of Sturgis into the hills. It is a little difficult, but loads of fun. We had a guy make it easily on a KLR.
    #9
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  10. 32dgrz

    32dgrz Been here awhile

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    My vote is for the adventure loop too!
    #10
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  11. bark sampler

    bark sampler Been here awhile

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    I’ll third the DAKAL. It’s a fantastic loop thanks to Blaster Bill with an excellent mix of scenery, nice route and a few challenges that are fun but not exceedingly dangerous. We did it with a range of bikes from Honda XR250’s to a BMW GSA. Everyone had a good time. Do as little or as much as you want.

    The single track is fantastic too but not very suitable for solo traveling. Lots of rocks to knick cases on and some steep sections can sneak up on you if you don’t know the trail. Depending on which ones you take, they don’t get a lot of traffic, so help isn’t handy if you have issues.
    #11
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  12. DirtFarmer

    DirtFarmer Has anyone seen my mother

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    Location:
    Kansas
    Black Hills National Forest have some very nice primitive camps that don't get much pressure. If it's hard to get a camper there, we never saw very many people in those camps.

    This is typical - pit toilet, no water except for very clear running streams that are easy to filter and picnic tables.

    [​IMG]

    Custer National Forest had some nice camps also by the North Dakota border;

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
    #12
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