The Black Hills Travel Blog

Author Archive

is an on-again, off-again Black Hills resident since 1978. The Aberdeen native hit the road after high school, building houses in Boulder, working oil rigs on Colorado's Western Slope, delivering cars in California. In Wyoming and Idaho, he worked as a newspaper journalist. But the Black Hills kept luring him back. For 18 years, he wrote for the Rapid City Journal. The job gave him a chance to see the Hills from atop Mount Rushmore and the bottom of the Homestake Mine. Whenever possible, Dan grabs his dog Kody and heads to the Hills. These days, he's perfecting the art of low-impact backpacking: hike two hours to a scenic spot, break out the wine, cook up the pasta, watch the sunset and fall asleep under the stars. Email this author




Signs of spring in the Black Hills and Badlands

By • Mar 20th, 2012 • Category: Culture

Today marks the official start of spring — the vernal equinox occurred at 1:14 this morning — but it already feels like summer in the Black Hills and Badlands. In fact, it”s been that way for more than a week. Temperatures last weekend were downright balmy — mid to  high 70s both days. The lilacs […]



A tale of two seasons … in one week

By • Mar 16th, 2012 • Category: Outdoor Adventure

If you’re into the outdoors, but can’t decide between winter sports and summer fun, don’t worry. In the Black Hills at this time of year, you can do both. “We actually had some members who golfed on Wednesday and skied on Thursday,” said Rob Kortan, head professional at the Spearfish Canyon Country Club. The scenic […]



Pardon me, boy, is that the track we saw on Youtube?

By • Mar 14th, 2012 • Category: Culture

The 1880 Train is one of those Black Hills attractions that kids never forget. Nostalgia and history buffs like it, too. It reminds them of the old days of passenger train travel, where you could ride from city to city, disembark downtown and catch a ride to your hotel or destination. (We’re not forgetting Amtrak, […]



We’re No. 4!

By • Mar 7th, 2012 • Category: Culture

It’s nice to hear what  other people think of you, especially if it’s favorable. That’s why it was so great to see the recent Public Policy Polling results that showed South Dakota had the fourth highest favorable rating among the 50 states. I have to believe the beauty of the Black Hills had a lot […]



Mammoth Site takes stab at new atlatl class

By • Mar 5th, 2012 • Category: Culture

Ancient paleo Indians used to hunt with a particularly effective weapon called an atlatl. It was a long, concave stick with a cup carved into one end. An arrow or dart was laid into the groove and thrown. The atlatl afforded the thrower incredible leverage. (Wish I could have found a good photo or drawing.) […]



Campers: Memorial Day is not far away

By • Feb 27th, 2012 • Category: Outdoor Adventure

Although winter is still upon us — in fact, more snow is headed our way this week — it’s not too early to start thinking about summer. The South Dakota Department of Game, Fish & Parks announced that you can now reserve a campsite for Memorial Day Weekend, which starts May 25 this year year. […]



Sacred hoop dancer coming to Lead

By • Feb 16th, 2012 • Category: Culture

The Lakota hoop dance is a colorful spectacle. Vivid colors, amazing acrobatic movement and music that leaves an unforgettable impression. The hoop dance is steeped in Lakota culture, and there’s deep meaning in every hoop, every move. If you’ve never seen it performed, you’re missing out. But here’s your chance. On Thursday, Feb. 23, at […]



No, really, there is snow in the Hills

By • Feb 7th, 2012 • Category: Outdoor Adventure

We had a nice dusting of snow overnight in the Black Hills. It kept drivers on their toes and warmed the hearts of winter-sports lovers throughout the region. Although it didn’t bring a lot of snow, conditions are still good. According to this handy snow depth chart I found, much of the Black Hills are […]



Houston route good news for Texas travelers

By • Jan 31st, 2012 • Category: Discoveries

Good news for Texas-based fans of the Black Hills. United Airlines announced today that it will add new seasonal nonstop service between Rapid City Regional Airport and Houston. The daily service begins June 7 and will continue to Aug. 27. And if past experience is an indication, United could expand that route to year-around service. […]