It’s October! Which means it’s prime time to go looking for some fall foliage. One of my favorite places? The Black Hills in western South Dakota. If you follow Wondering & Wandering on Instagram, sorry in advance for all the photos of the leaves – we’re going crazy over them. Anyways, here’s how you can spend a weekend in the Black Hills!
How To Spend A Weekend In The Black Hills
My weekend trip last month to Canada really inspired me to explore closer to home. So, I spontaneously decided to take off this past weekend to the opposite side of the state: the Black Hills. As unprepared as I may have been, I came back with a ton of great memories that I get to share with you all. Although the list of things to do out in the Hills are endless, I have some suggestions listed below.
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Spearfish Canyon Scenic Byway
When coming from Spearfish on Interstate 90, you will take either exit 10 or 14 to begin your beautiful 22-mile drive. Don’t worry about having to take photos from inside your vehicle, because there are plenty of spots along the way to safely pull over and enjoy the view.
Tip: Take some Dramamine if you get car/motion sickness like me because there are a series of quick turns throughout the drive. Also, if you’re looking for a day hike, then there are several options along the way: Roughlock Falls, Devils Bathtub, ’76 trail, and much more.
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This is by far one of the most visited attractions in Spearfish Canyon and for a good reason. Getting to the falls requires very little effort, so is easily accessible to nearly anyone who wants to take a stroll, bike, and/or photograph these gorgeous waterfalls.
Despite the fact that I have lived in South Dakota my entire life, this past weekend was my first time exploring Devil’s bathtub. I was not disappointed! One thing to be aware of is that this short hike does require you to cross water, climb some rocks, and possibly walk across tree branches. As beautiful as the waterfall and “bathtub” are, my favorite part was the side of the canyon along the way.
Crazy Horse Memorial
In Custer County, you will discover the world’s largest mountain carving (in progress), which is in memory of a Native American Warrior. This project began in 1948 and is said to take several more decades to be completed, if ever. Unfortunately, this monument is funded entirely by donations, so you can imagine how difficult it is to complete. The hike will lead you up to being inches away from the sculpture. And just so you know, it’s only open to the public twice a year as it’s being worked on 12 months out of the year. If you’re going to be visiting in October, be sure to participate in this. It only costs $3 and is worth every penny.
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