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Black Hills web pages

Harney Peak in the Black Hills of South Dakota

This page is one small part of Good Sites for Kids!

Look for New Site to see what's been added lately!


Here's a page about the local area, home of Mt. Rushmore, Crazy Horse, Deadwood, the Black Hills, the Badlands, Pine Ridge Reservation, the Sturgis Motorcycle Rally, and a few dozen other things, too!


What does it take to get through to some people?


New Site

No rollerskating!


New Site

No tummy rubs! No dancing!




Badlands National Park official site. Lunar scenery and the biggest Oligocene fossil beds in the world.



Bear Butte view 1 Bear Butte 2

Bear Butte (links to TripAdvisor) is a laccolith just east of Sturgis.
Bear Butte is sacred to various Native American nations and tribes.

  • State Park site
  • Wikipedia site
  • A site about the Native beliefs, geology, and history
  • More about laccoliths, with diagrams and photos

    Black Hills and Badlands The official tourism site. Videos of the area so you'll know what to see. A big list of links to local tourist attractions. Too many to list here. They have free South Dakota Vacation Guides, 280 pages worth! Click the link, scroll down, and fill out the form.



    Dinosaurs Black Hills Institute of Geological Research has a fantastic dinosaur museum in Hill City. Small in area but crammed with dino skeletons including (usually) several T-Rex. Known worldwide, the Institute sponsored the 100 Years of T-Rex seminar in the summer of 2005, with many big name dinosaur paleontologists attending. For even more dinosaurs and other ancient creatures, check out the Geology Museum at the School of Mines and Technology.



    Mustangs running at Black Hills Wild Horse Sanctuary Black Hills Wild Horse Sanctuary "See hundreds of wild American, Spanish, and Sulphur mustangs roaming free across wind swept prairies. Imagine a place where, as far as the eye can see, miles and miles to the horizon, you can view America as it was 300 years ago. Imagine a place, long revered by the American Indians, where the Cheyenne River flows in all four directions, and eagles’ shadows sweep the rocky canyon walls, a place where wild horses run free across endless prairies, hooves striking thunder, manes and tails flying in the wind." Fourteen miles (23 km) south of Hot Springs (home of the Mammoth Site). Visit if you're anyplace close and see this wonderful place for yourself! See their Slide Show and explore the rest of the site, too!



    We Are A Horse Nation - short version
    A documentary film that shares the voices of the Oceti Sakowin
    (the Lakota, Dakota, & Nakota speaking tribal bands of the Great
    Plains region), as they honor their relatives - The Horse Nation
    (Sunka Wakan Oyate).


    Chapel in the Hills, an Authentic Viking Age Stave Church in Rapid City, South Dakota
    There's a great short video of the Chapel!
    Chapel in the Hills

    The Chapel in the Hills is an exact replica of the 850-year-old
    Borgund stavkirke (stave church) in Laerdal, Norway, the
    best preserved stave church still standing in Norway.
    The Chapel was built in 1969 at the foot of the Black Hills
    in South Dakota. Official Site: Chapel in the Hills


    City of Deadwood Home Page in the northern Black Hills sits famous Deadwood.


    City of Rapid City, South Dakota Home Page


    Custer State Park Huge park and game preserve
    in the Black Hills has amazing rock formations, lakes,
    hills, resorts, and 1,500 buffalo!
    (This is one of only two genetically pure herds of
    Bison bison in the world!)


    Custer State Park Named as one of the 10 best state
    parks in America by Mother Nature Network. A nice
    little write up with the de rigueur (but excellent) bison photo.


    Crazy Horse Memorial sealCrazy Horse Memorial Official site. This huge mountain carving of famed Oglala Lakota leader Crazy Horse will dwarf Mount Rushmore when completed.  The webcams are good for day and night viewing. The site tells the story of Crazy Horse, the sculptor Korczak Ziolkowski, and the ongoing work on the mountain by the Ziolkowski family.  The Memorial is also a Native American education center with a fine museum.

    Crazy Horse volksmarchCrazy Horse Mtn



    Devils Tower (AKA Bear Lodge) is in the Bear Lodge formation of northeast Wyoming, the northwestern lobe of the Black Hills. It's about 80 miles/130 km from Mount Rushmore. Here's the Devils Tower Wikipedia site. A collection of photos. The NPS site has detailed information about the cultural history and physical geography/geology. A magnet for rock climbers, Devils Tower attracts world class talent. This 7 minute video of French crack climber Catherine Destivelle shows off the Tower to good advantage.

    photo from Wikipedia


    New Site

    Inyan Kara Mountain, Wyoming

    Like its neighbor, Devil's Tower, Inyan Kara
    has plenty of columnar basalt.
    Some of it is shown below:
    Both photos are from summitpost

    Going in Black Hills


    Red Butte, Wyoming
    This 5,747 foot summit is south of Inyan Kara
    in the red rock area that circles much of the
    Black Hills of Wyoming and South Dakota.

    Red sandstone capped by limestone!
    credit = summitpost
    Going in Black Hills


    DIGNITY - by Dale Lamphere, in honor of the women of the Great Sioux Nation. Dignity sits on a bluff just east of Chambelain, South Dakota. Missouri River in the background, to the west.

    Dignity is a metal sculpture of a shawl dancer. It is on a hill by the east shore of the
    Missouri River in South Dakota, near Chamberlain, on I-90.


    Douglas School District Serving Box Elder and Ellsworth AFB.


    Ellsworth Air Force Base public site

    B-1Bs at Ellsworth



    Jewel Cave National Monument official page.  135+ miles (217 km) of explored cave (plus 100's of miles/km unexplored), wonderful crystals. Excellent page on local bats!


    Journey Museum "The Journey Museum of Rapid City, SD" is an excellent small museum that covers everything cultural, historical, biological, geological about this town and the Black Hills. Definitely worth visiting while you are in the Rapid City and Black Hills!


    Local Weather Courtesy of Wunderground



    Lakota Winter Counts - An online exhibit from the Smithsonian. Who are the Lakota? What's a Winter Count? Who made them? What art media were used? Listen to Lakota elders explain the records of the years. See surviving winter counts from as far back as 1701. The gallery of winter counts is awesome. (To scroll right or left, put your mouse arrow in the upper left or upper right side of the picture.) Bonus: Native speaker pronounces Lakota words for you! Click on the tiny white words "Audio Glossary" that are underneath the main site.




    Mammoth Site pit Mammoth Site Located in Hot Springs in the southern Black Hills, The Mammoth Site is an ancient sinkhole full of dozens of mammoth skeletons! Click on the menu bar along the top to take the Virtual Tour and check out the Education Department.



    New Site



    New Site



    Mount Rushmore National Memorial This is the official
    Parks Service site. Plenty of information, sections on history
    , nature and science, areas for kids and for teachers.


    Mount Rushmore - State of South Dakota tourism site. Another site with a good History section, tourist info, links to other attractions.


    Mama and three cubs. From a trail cam photo near Deadwood,
    South Dakota, November 2021.

    Maybe they were heading into Deadwood to play the slots?!



    Two Black Hills residents having a conversation.


    Museum of Geology, SDSM&T (South Dakota School of Mines and Technology). This great science and engineering school (one of the world's best) has their world-class collection of fossils and minerals online! Their unique Dino Cam lets your watch one of best mosasaur skeletons anywhere while it and a nearby plesiosaur check out the tusks on a Columbian mammoth! (Not your normal scenario.) Read the brag about their thousands of specimens on exhibit!


    The Native American Drum "The drum is not just a musical instrument. To the Lakota, Dakota and Nakota people, it holds great cultural and symbolic power. They believe the drum has a life of its own, as well as its own powerful spirit. The drum is the heartbeat of the Indian Nation. It carries the heartbeat of Mother Earth and calls the spirits and nations together." Read this page to learn more.


    from KILI-FM Voice of the Lakota Nation - AKA "Rock from da Rez" - Santa at powwowClick on the pic to see Santa Claus dancing at a powwow (video)!

    Click here to see a short video of the Oglala Lakota Nation PowWow, from NatGeo.
    The Lakota word for powwow is wacipi (wahcheepee).

    A "drum" is a team of drummers who play at powwows. once had a list of 1,432 drums from all over North America. Much like rock bands, some drums constantly change people and names; others go on for years just adding younger family members.

    There are two main types: Northern and Southern styles. For more information, is a good place to start.

    One drummer says to another drummer: "He says he's from a northern drum? (from a drum far away in the North)"

    FYI, Native American/First Nations people DO NOT LIVE IN TEEPEES!!! We can't say that enough!! They live in houses. Around here, they wear jeans and tshirts in the summer. Add a sweater, boots, gloves, a hoodie or a coat in winter. Just like everybody else who lives here.



    Oglala Lakota College logo Oglala Lakota College A tribally controlled institution serving the educational needs of the Lakota Oyate, focused on the Pine Ridge Reservation but with a branch campus in north Rapid City. Click here to see their Native American resources links.



    Pennington County, South Dakota Web Page


    Plains Milky Way - the famous YouTube video was shot here in South Dakota, near the Missouri River, by a farmer! Beautiful, show it to classes on an Elmo or a Promethean.


    Rapid City and Black Hills Convention and Visitors Bureau


    Rapid City Journal Local daily newspaper


    Rapid City Municipal Parks System has 32 (yes, 32) named parks and a bicycle path that runs from the east end of town up into the Hills. Seriously. Enjoy mountain bicycling, golf, scenic views, hill climbing and hiking, children's playgrounds, running, basketball, tennis, flower gardens, fussball/futbol/football/soccer, or walk along the paths for a while.


    Spinning gold star Rapid City Public Library  Excellent site, lots of access to sites for kids, research of all kinds, activities, online catalog, lots more. Go get your library card!


    Rapid City School District


    South Dakota Air and Space Museum Located in Box Elder near the main Ellsworth AFB entrance. Features a B-1, B-52D, B-29, many more aircraft.


    South Dakota From Above a video by Toby Brusseau Productions almost six minutes of stunning and beautiful views of western South Dakota. Animals, geology, the Black Hills, and an amazing soundtrack!


    Storybook Island for children. Free admission, but good people make a small contribution. Train rides, a playground, a special section for the very young, a playhouse with plays and singing, small animals, fairytale houses, a castle, ducks, ... Oh, there is so much. Parents can sit in the shade and watch their children play nearby.


    Sturgis Rally. We like the Rally, really we do, but this site is "for kids". Google "Sturgis" and you'll easily find the best Motorcycle Rally sites. Some years the Rally has 500,000+ bikers, in early August.


    Vore Buffalo Jump Painting.jpgThe Vore Buffalo Jump, one of North America's most important and spectacular Plains Indian archaeological sites, is a stone's throw from I-90, in Wyoming just west of Spearfish SD. See the excavation and learn the history, science and culture. There's another jump (unexcavated), the Sanson Buffalo Jump, within Wind Cave National Park.



    Wind Cave National Park official site.  A huge cave, a large bison herd, deer, mountain sheep, prairie dogs, fossils. All in the beautiful Black Hills. (Remember - bison are dangerous. Not very bright, they prefer to be peaceful, but they anger quickly and they can move like lightning. Do not approach, do not walk up to bison, do not try to take selfies, and NEVER attempt to touch a bison calf, or get between a calf and its mother. Stay in your car and you can safely look all you want to.)



    Youth and Family Services  Featuring Head Start, Child Care, Girls Incorporated, Health Connections, counseling services, and much more. Providing essential services to hundreds of underprivileged kids and their families in western South Dakota.

    Mount Rushmore Carmelita in her bandana Black Hills

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