RV.Net Open Roads Forum: TR (sort of) - was "Black Hills Boondocking"

RV Blog

  |  

RV Sales

  |  

Campgrounds

  |  

RV Parks

  |  

RV Club

  |  

RV Buyers Guide

  |  

Roadside Assistance

  |  

Extended Service Plan

  |  

RV Travel Assistance

  |  

RV Credit Card

  |  

RV Loans

Open Roads Forum Already a member? Login here.   If not, Register Today!  |  Help

Newest  |  Active  |  Popular  |  RVing FAQ Forum Rules  |  Forum Posting Help and Support  |  Contact  

Search:   Advanced Search

Search only in Truck Campers

Open Roads Forum  >  Truck Campers

 > TR (sort of) - was "Black Hills Boondocking"

This Topic Is Closed  |  Print Topic  |  Post New Topic  | 
Page of 3  
Prev  |  Next
Sponsored By:
umbrellajive

New Hampshire

New Member

Joined: 04/14/2010

View Profile



Good Sam RV Club Member

Offline
Posted: 10/04/11 09:46am Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

We also went to Custer State Park and loved it overall. The Black Hills are one of my favorite spots in America (that I have seen so far). We didn't have reservations (last summer) and got put into Blue Bell campground. It was basic, nice, and we just stayed one night. Met some other nice truck camping folks (in a homemade TC from the 1960s). The camp host had a wildlife film playing in the common area during the evening.
Best part of Custer State Park? The Wildlife Loop Rd., just awesome: http://gfp.sd.gov/state-parks/directory/custer/activities/drives.aspx Bison and burros abound!
We went to Mt Rushmore, but I hope to get back for Crazy Horse and the Badlands someday. Have a great trip!


2010 Northern Lite 8'11 Q Classic (but it's no special edition!)
2008 GMC Sierra 2500HD, Ext. cab, 4x4, SRW, 6.0L, shortbed with Bullhide liner.
Bridgestone Dueler A/T Revo2s: 265/75R/16E and MB 72 8.5" wheels
Firestone air bags

btggraphix

Golden, CO

Senior Member

Joined: 03/08/2005

View Profile



Posted: 10/06/11 10:09pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Haeding out in the morning...thanks for all the suggestions guys. Had to turn on the heat since it is below freezing at the house right now!

Woo hoo!!!!!!!

Eugarps

Hagerstown, MD

Senior Member

Joined: 09/26/2002

View Profile


Offline
Posted: 10/08/11 06:07am Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Hi,

You might try this Recreation.gov search engine for wherever you're going. I searched using Devil's Tower NM, WY and it looks like there are a number of campsites in the area.

Bill

jnes

Washington

Full Member

Joined: 07/27/2004

View Profile


Offline
Posted: 10/09/11 09:13pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

realter wrote:

There is a Lutheran camp 6 miles NorthWest of Custer, I spent some time there in the 80's, but they have been open since 1969. The name is Lee Valley Ranch. A very pretty area.


Lee Valley is not staffed as a camp past mid-August. If you stop there you are invading someone's private life. More goes on there than just a camp that runs a few weeks a year.

btggraphix

Golden, CO

Senior Member

Joined: 03/08/2005

View Profile



Posted: 10/17/11 08:29am Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

So - thanks for everyone's suggestions. We had a great time....it's been way too long since I've been up there and I wasn't dissapointed.

The Black Hills was an easy 6 hour or so drive from the foothills above Denver(to Custer) which is not much different than when we go to Moab, at least by the time we drive out into Kane Creek Canyon or many of the places we choose to camp. We got sidetracked a bit by stopping at Guernsey State Park and several of the Oregon Trail points and just barely made it into the USFS district HQ and bought maps (I can never seem to enter one of those places without spending $100 on maps and local books.) Quite a few of the campgrounds were closed (including Horsethief Lake) but our "chosen" CG was Bismark Lake and although the main loop with the best sites was closed, 5 sites along the road to the boat launch were open and I was able to secure 2 next to one another and our friends arrived later in the evening. The weather was cool and cloudy, including some very low clouds but we got very little rain. Saturday afternoon we did a loop into Custer State Park and the Needles highway and then pulled into the Crazy Horse Memorial...where because of relatively low clouds the were charging half price AND we could go back again within three days if the weather was better. Sunday morning was still very low clouds, so we went to Wind Cave, where apparently because of the weather, the tour we wanted to hit was full....but with 22 other people waiting, one of the rangers skipped lunch and ran an additional shortened tour for us. We went back to camp for lunch, then did the slightly larger loop into Custer State Park to Keystone, then on to Mount Rushmore.....where they weren't even charging since you couldn't see the mountain AT ALL. On our way out we went by Crazy Horse again and it was mostly visible so we stopped on in, and ended up watching the laser/light show which was pretty cool. The clouds dropped back down by the end though.

Finally on Monday we had a steller clear sunny day, and we drove over to the George S. Mickelson Trail a little south of Crazy Horse, and rode the 12 or so miles from there north to Hill City. I have to say that trail is just terrific....winding along following the old railroad grade.....some information signs at historic spots.....beautiful little farms and horse properties.....little trestles....a meandering creek.....and because of where we chjose to ride it, almost all downhill! I definitely want to go back and ride some of the sections that go through the tunnels. Had our friends pick us up in Hill City and drop us back off at our truck, and then went back over to Mount Rushmore. I do have to say that I hadn't been there in a little over 20 years, and they have made a lot of improvements. If you haven't been in a long time it is worth a visit back.

It isn't hard to see why the Native Americans felt so strongly about the Black Hills being a 'religous' place. The rolling hills and jagged granite spires with lush meadows and lakes is really really nice. We want to go back already.

Thanks again for the suggestions. This time of year it is probably easiest to camp at the nearly deserted campgrounds. If we went back in more of the "camping season" for the rest of the population, I have a lot better idea of where we might find some good boondocking sites; there are so many USFS roads throughout the hills I don't think it would too hard to find some good spots.

sirdrakejr

Las Vegas, Nevada

Senior Member

Joined: 11/18/2001

View Profile



Good Sam RV Club Member

Offline
Posted: 10/17/11 03:11pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

On the way from Denver to Custer, there is a small place called Lusk that had a nice CG for about 20 places to stop overnight. It was a very convenient place to stop between those two places. As a Hart Ranch Member, I went there a few times from Colo Spgs.

http://www.go-wyoming.com/Bjs-Campground
Frank

* This post was edited 10/17/11 03:18pm by sirdrakejr *


2011 Palomino Maverick 1000SLLB on a 2004 Dodge Quadcab CTD Ram3500 SRW long bed equipped with Timbren springs, Stable Load bump stops, Rickson 19.5" wheels/"G" range tires and a Helwig "Big Wig" rear anti sway bar.


btggraphix

Golden, CO

Senior Member

Joined: 03/08/2005

View Profile



Posted: 12/23/11 03:35pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Finally updated.....a slow day at work and I figured I might as well post some pictures.

So - we got a reasonably early start from Denver heading north on I-25, but by the time we got to Cheyenne we saw signs the insterstate had high wind advisories for high profile vehicles. Hard to not admit that I must count as high-profile....but the highway wasn't closed. Right near Wheatland the wind really picked up. Saw a couple of these, and also some pairs of semi's travelling side by side so that the downwind rig (possibly empty?) would be out of the wind. I really didn't feel like I was going to blow over or anything, but I'm not sure you get any warning. I feel like we blow around a lot less than we did in our old combo. Yeah, this one is a lot taller, but it is also twice the weight.

[image]

We exited I-25 at Guernsey, and took the time to drive into Guernsey State Park. It was deserted (as most things are in October) and there were a number of nice campsites. Some would be boat in, boat out if the water level was 'normal'.

[image]

[image]

There were also a number of really cool log frame buildings, built by the CCC back in the day (they have a museum about the CCC (that was closed.) We also stopped at the Oregon Trail Wagon Ruts which was very cool. There are a few Oregon Trail sites along here.....we defintiely could have been happy spending a little more time at the state park and visiting the other sites, but needed to keep moving to get up to the Black Hills and secure some sites (our friends joined us later in the evening.)

[image]

[image]

[image]

Heading north from Lingle, towards Lusk....an interesting flood plain with old cottonwoods evenly spread accross it. Most seem to be dying off, I suppose because the river no longer floods.

[image]

On the way up, we turned east towards Edgemont South Dakota, and then north to Pringle. The Mickleson Trail starts here and goes north, all the way through the Black Hills to the northern end at Deadwood. It is 109 miles long and really really nice. There are 15 seperate trailheads for access and it has over 100 converted railroad bridges (plus a number of tunnels.) It is an easy grade the whole way with plenty of ups and downs. If you want to, you can choose to start near a higher point, and be able to largely ride all downhill. It often follows near a highway, but the actual trail is commonly away from the highway....you ride through a lot of private land with beautiful old cabins, barns, meadows etc. More pictures of it to follow, but we saw glimpses of the trail on the drive between Edgemont and Custer.

[image]

[image]

[image]

Getting close to Custer....what the heck is that?

[image]

The Gordon Stockade - a neat little reconstructed stockade that was inhabited for a short while by gold prospectors. The Black Hills had been set aside as part of an Indian Reservation, but the Custer expedition of 1874 had found gold so the prospectors came regardless. The party in this stockade were forced to abandon it and the army took them out. Most all of them returned shortly thereafter.

The inside has a bunch of buildings, but I kind of like the appearance from a distance....

[image]

The other one I wanted to post, is the cool design of overlapping logs to run water off:

[image]

Stockade Lake:

[image]

We actually camped at Bismark Lake, which was an even smaller lake. I think I put in some detail about it in another post.

I'm going to cut it off here - after the drive up - and post some more of the pictures a little later.

nycsteve

NY

Senior Member

Joined: 01/26/2008

View Profile





Offline
Posted: 10/17/11 04:44pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Pictures! I know you have some [emoticon]





btggraphix

Golden, CO

Senior Member

Joined: 03/08/2005

View Profile



Posted: 10/17/11 07:46pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

sirdrakejr wrote:

On the way from Denver to Custer, there is a small place called Lusk that had a nice CG for about 20 places to stop overnight. It was a very convenient place to stop between those two places. As a Hart Ranch Member, I went there a few times from Colo Spgs.

http://www.go-wyoming.com/Bjs-Campground
Frank


I think we actually saw that CG and thought it actually looked pretty nice. The CG's at Guernsey State Park were really nice and completely empty....it really struck us a place that might be worth going back to, even on a short weekend. There were a few spots that were right on the water and would make for a good place to take a canoe. There was a CCC museum (closed) and some decent looking trails as well. We've camped at Glendo before, but not Guernsey.

btggraphix

Golden, CO

Senior Member

Joined: 03/08/2005

View Profile



Posted: 10/17/11 07:49pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

nycsteve wrote:

Pictures! I know you have some [emoticon]


Busted! I've been bad about not posting TR's for the last year or so. I guess I could cheat and just post some pictures on this thread and call it good (with all the great TR writers on here you kind of feel like you need to put a lot of effort into it.....but I should follow the same advice I give others and figure anything is better than nothing - they don't have to be perfect or take a lot of effort.) I'll try to get some up here soon.

Thanks for the prod!

This Topic Is Closed  |  Print Topic  |  Post New Topic  | 
Page of 3  
Prev  |  Next

Open Roads Forum  >  Truck Campers

 > TR (sort of) - was "Black Hills Boondocking"
Search:   Advanced Search

Search only in Truck Campers


New posts No new posts
Closed, new posts Closed, no new posts
Moved, new posts Moved, no new posts

Adjust text size:




© 2021 CWI, Inc. © 2021 Good Sam Enterprises, LLC. All Rights Reserved.