How many days Mt Rushmore area?

Feb 23rd, 2006, 12:35 PM
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How many days Mt Rushmore area?

Planning a roadtrip to SD right after Memorial Day. Not sure how many days to plan to see the following at a fairly leisurely pace:
Badlands, Black Hills, Mt Rushmore, Chief Crazyhorse Monument, Custer State Park, some of the caves, do some of the scenic drives, and spend some time in Deadwood to see it. We'll probably do Devils Tower on way in or out.
Is there anything we're forgetting?
Any suggestions for places to stay or restaurants or anything else?
Would 4 full days be about right?
We're a 'young' senior couple - no kids. Don't do any strenuous hiking...just walks, photography, site-seeing, etc.
Thanks in advance for your responses.

TAW is offline  
Feb 23rd, 2006, 05:19 PM
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Interestingly, as soon as I saw the title of your post I thought, "Four days should be about right." After reading your post, I stand by my first thought.

The great thing about the Black Hills is that there's always another thing to see if you want to. If you're bored after three days, just add a couple more things to your list of things to see.
PaulRabe is offline  
Feb 23rd, 2006, 05:45 PM
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I agree! You can always add more to the trip (tho I always say Crazyhorse is better from the road than paying the steep entry fee to get closer), the caves are great, and Custer State Park and the Needles are terrific. You will have fun!
sylvia3 is online now  
Feb 23rd, 2006, 06:54 PM
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They placed a high earth berm along the roadway so it is difficult to see the Chief without going in and paying your dues. If you have never been there go, its worth the fee ever two or three years.

The Black Hills is a vry large area. Right after the Memorial Day weekend you should not be botherd with a lot of people. It does get crowded first couple weeks of August when Sturgis is in full bloom. This years Motorcycle Rally is 7-13 August.
RedRock is offline  
Feb 24th, 2006, 03:50 AM
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Four days will be more than enough. We stayed in Keystone and could see Mt Rushmore from our room.As we were doing an extensive tour we did Deadwood(nothing to see) and Devils tower on our way to Montana.Greetings from Belgium. Paul
tovarich is offline  
Feb 24th, 2006, 04:14 AM
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We stayed in Custer State Park driving Needles Hwy and Iron Mountain which is a trip in itself. At night, Mt Rushmore and Crazy horse are both lighted and from Iron Mountain Hwy you can see them both. Just an added plus.
cd is offline  
Feb 24th, 2006, 06:07 AM
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SD is a beautiful and undervisited state. I think your plan sounds fine. I went to the buffalo roundup in the fall a few years ago and had a terrific time. People are so freindly and the landscape so beautiful. Try the buffalo steaks on many menus.
ekscrunchy is offline  
Feb 24th, 2006, 07:02 AM
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p.s. Make sure you have your National Parks card and make sure you go right up to Rushmore. (I was surprised as it kept getting more and more impressive the closer we got!)Too bad about Crazyhorse (isn't it taking them a very long time to finish, given current technology?!)
sylvia3 is online now  
Feb 24th, 2006, 07:18 AM
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Four days sounds good to me too. Anytime I respond to a Black Hills post I take the opportunity to recommend staying in Custer State Park. There are four great resorts right in the park. It's a beautiful, central location for seeing the area. And the restaurants in the park are very good. But I would consider contacting them very soon as they fill up quickly. Their web site is

I'd also recommend the Safari Jeep tour in the park.
CAPH52 is offline  
Feb 24th, 2006, 07:34 AM
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You'll probably want to do Mt. Rushmore twice - once during the day and then again when they do the illumination. They do a musical performance with American music before lighting up the monument. It is quite moving.

You'll only have to pay once - you pay a one-time parking fee that is good for a whole year.
ajcolorado is offline  
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