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Thread: Rapid City

  1. #1
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    Rapid City

    Hey guys, I'll be moving to Rapid City at the end of the month and I'm trying to get a list together of the trails there, because it seems like there is a ton! I'm a Texas who has lived in Bismarck, ND for the past year and a half and am looking forward to living someplace nicer/better than Bismarck.

    In Texas I rode trials 90% of the time, 5% MTB, and 5% commuting. Bismarck has nothing at all to ride trials on so MTB and trials have switched as well as I've picked up a road bike and a monstercross bike, and I still commute by bike.

    I'm really hoping to even to even things out and ride more trials but also mtb/dirt jumps (please let there be things to ride trials on there! natural or urban). I've ridden about 30 miles of the Centennial Trail and loved it! I know of a few other but I definitely want to ride everything the area has to offer.

    From what I've seen, here is my list of trails I've heard of and was wondering what other trails there are in the area as well as if anyone has seen places to ride trials.

    • Centennial Trail
    • Mickleson Trail
    • M-Hill
    • Dirt Jump Park/Pump Track by M-Hill
    • Bone Collector
    • Terry Peak
    • Motor Boat

  2. #2
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    I was impressed with the trails used for the Dakota Five-O race in Spearfish. Lots of opportunity there. Maybe 30-40min drive?

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    congrats! The hills have a ton of riding. I have lived in Rapid for 2.5 years now and I still haven't ridden everything. Some more trails to check out, just to name a few, Storm Mt by Rockerville, the victoria lake area loops, buzzards Roost, and all the trails in the shank's quarry area, which also includes bone collector. The best way to discover them is to meet up on group rides, or ride with someone who know's the area well. If you need someone to ride with let us know, I'm always up for a ride.

    -ross-

  4. #4
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    Get in touch with any of the local shops in the aread, Acme (make sure to say hi to Suka if you visit), Two Wheeler Dealer, or Scheels and I can almost guarantee that there will be someone there to help you out. Check out BHMBA - Black Hills Mountain Bike Association lots off good information about the area and postings for rides.

    Make sure to check out the Fat Tire Festival at the end of May, always a good time and a great chance to meet a lot of really cool folks, been making the trip up from Sioux City almost every year for that and have yet to be disappointed.

    happy trails...

    squish
    Get out and ride!

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    PahaSapaTrails.com

    I will be adding a bunch as the snow flies.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by evilsjg View Post
    PahaSapaTrails.com

    I will be adding a bunch as the snow flies.
    What's the condition of the dirt at Hanson-Larsen Memorial Park right now? I'm coming out in a few days for the holidays and wondered if the dirt is dry, if the freeze/thaw cycle is in effect or if I should just leave the bike at home and bring the snow skis. I don't mind getting up early to hit the dirt from the night's freeze if that's what it takes to avoid riding on soggy trails.

    TIA

    BB

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    Quote Originally Posted by BruceBrown View Post
    What's the condition of the dirt at Hanson-Larsen Memorial Park right now? I'm coming out in a few days for the holidays and wondered if the dirt is dry, if the freeze/thaw cycle is in effect or if I should just leave the bike at home and bring the snow skis. I don't mind getting up early to hit the dirt from the night's freeze if that's what it takes to avoid riding on soggy trails.

    TIA

    BB
    I was just there this morning properly breaking in a ZTR Flow, there is 1-2" of packed snow on the trails where there is no southern exposure, snow coverage on the trails was probably about 10%, it was all very ride-able. If HLMP is not in good shape while you are here, then I would suspect either Storm or one of the Victoria loops will be.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by evilsjg View Post
    I was just there this morning properly breaking in a ZTR Flow, there is 1-2" of packed snow on the trails where there is no southern exposure, snow coverage on the trails was probably about 10%, it was all very ride-able. If HLMP is not in good shape while you are here, then I would suspect either Storm or one of the Victoria loops will be.
    Thanks for the report. I appreciate it and will load the bike up for the trip.

  9. #9
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    Thanks for all the info and comments guys, I can't wait to make the move! slickrockross, I'll be sure to PM when I get there.

    Thanks for the Paha Sapa Trails website, that's going to help a ton. When I get a complete list, I'm going to print it out and put it on the wall of my bike room and ride them all!

    Here is the list as of now:

    • Centennial Trail
    • Mickleson Trail
    • Hansen-Larsen Memorial Park Trail Network and M-Hill
    • Dirt Jump Park/Pump Track by M-Hill
    • Shank's Quarry Area and Bone Collector
    • Terry Peak
    • Motor Boat
    • Storm Mt by Rockerville
    • Victoria Lake Area Loops
    • Buzzards Roost
    • Dakota Five-O Race Trail in Spearfish
    • BAM Knifeblade Race/Ride Trail
    • Alkali Creek Trail Network
    • Norbeck / Black Elk Trail Network
    • Leonard Swanson Memorial Pathway
    • Deerfield Lake Loop Trail No. 40L

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    Check this web site come spring ACME Bicycles - Rapid City, SD . In the lower Rt side of the site is a Black Hills Events listing. We start "Pedalheads" rides the end of April beg of May based on weather and trail conditions. A great bunch of people to ride with, lots of fun, no pressure to be a speedster, and the beer is always cold at the end of the ride. This site will have dates, times, and detailed instructions how to get to the meeting place. Just show up and introduce yourself, you'll feel welcome right away. We ride most of the trails around Rapid at least once if not twice a season.
    As mentioned in another reply, check out the rides at the Black Hills Fat Tire Festival Memorial Day Weekend. There will be multiple group rides daily Fri - Mon with local folks leading. They're all great rides and good friendly people to help you out.
    Also check the BHMBA forums. There is a group ride section that people post on for rides that are open to anybody interested in going.
    I have lived in Rapid 18 years, and I still find something new each year.

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    Breezy Point

    Breezy Point Parking lot behind Mt. Rushmore is a great trail to ride and about 25% is through rock areas that would lend themselves well to trails, if you can do trails on your mtb or ride your trails bike on a mtb trail. Or, you can do trails at the overlook on that bike than rid ethe loop on your mtb.

    Bone Collector and connecting trails also have great rock to play on.

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tjaard View Post
    Breezy Point Parking lot behind Mt. Rushmore is a great trail to ride and about 25% is through rock areas that would lend themselves well to trails, if you can do trails on your mtb or ride your trails bike on a mtb trail. Or, you can do trails at the overlook on that bike than rid ethe loop on your mtb.

    Bone Collector and connecting trails also have great rock to play on.
    Thanks for the heads up! I'll have to go check it out! Hopefully the amazing weather lasts and I can go ride soon!

    I'm finally in Rapid City, the only 2 bikes I have built so far are my and my wife's MTBs. I might go ride M-Hill tomorrow depending on how unpacking goes!

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    Hi all,

    Coloradoan here. A group of us are planning on coming up in the third weekend in May for a weekend retreat of riding and camping. Any good remote camping in the national forest nearby or even rideable to trails? Suggestions for two days of riding?

    Any thoughts or suggestions are appreciated.

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    There is the National Forest campground at Deerfield Lake with the 12 mile lake loop trail that you can ride right from the campground, If you take in the scenery it takes about 3.5 hours to ride the trail. You can also branch off that trail onto trail 40 and go out and back as long as you want. Great single track riding. With a short half hour drive there are several other trails you can hit from Deerfield. Not far off is the Mickelson Trail which is a gravel railroad bed through the hills, not a challenging single track, but very scenic.
    Word of caution, that time of year you could have rain, snow, cold, or hot. Deerfield lake is higher up in the hills and can get very cold that time of year, so bring warm clothes.

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    Deerfield is pretty good. I'd also check out Sheridan lake or pactola resevoir. Both within a mile of the centennial trail. They should be fairly quiet that time of year. They are within 20 miles of all the great riding. If you want remote camping it's allowed in most places in the forest. storm mt is a must ride, Victoria creek loops, buzzards roost, and the centennial trail north of pactola as an out and back is a good ride. The centennial north of Dalton lake (which has a small campground) up to alkali creek is epic in my opinion. Look at pahasapa.com and acme bicycles for some good maps, guides. Weather "should" be good, but we get a lot of pop up afternoon storms then, so bring rain gear. Most of the trails hold up well in the rain, so t shouldn't be an issue. If you need help or a guide just let us know when it gets closer, I'm sure I or somebody would be glad to show you around.

    Ross

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    Guys, thanks. This information is really helpful. I will check back in as the date approaches, but sounds like there are good camping options both in campgrounds and at large.

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    So it seems like Sheridan has the largest campground and there are some sites on the lake? Would you say that is the best camping for access and location? Primitive is fun, but we will have roughly 15 guys, so a developed campground may be best.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Rontele View Post
    So it seems like Sheridan has the largest campground and there are some sites on the lake? Would you say that is the best camping for access and location? Primitive is fun, but we will have roughly 15 guys, so a developed campground may be best.
    Sheridan is a very nice National Forest Campground. I live 15 minutes from there. It would be central to a lot of trails to give you great rides. If coming before Memorial Day it should be fairly calm then. There is a group camping area that is on the North side of the lake that would give you ride out access to the Centenial Trail. The group areas are not right on the lake, but a short walk to the lake. I don't know when for sure they open the entire campground, but there are enough sites available to accomodate your group. There is also a "bath House" at the south beach area and I'm not sure if there's showers in there or not. Sheridan is also closer to Rapid and Hill City for an evening meal/liquid refreshments and lower elevation than Deerfield so a little warmer. Here is the link to the Forest Service site on Sheridan Lake and you can call for details.
    Black Hills National Forest - Sheridan Lake Complex
    PM me closer to time and I may be able to show you some trails to start on. I'm an a full time student now, and done on 12 May, so I may have time on my hands after that. I'm "older" and slower, but I have provided guide service for beer.

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    Quote Originally Posted by BobR549 View Post
    Sheridan is a very nice National Forest Campground. I live 15 minutes from there. It would be central to a lot of trails to give you great rides. If coming before Memorial Day it should be fairly calm then. There is a group camping area that is on the North side of the lake that would give you ride out access to the Centenial Trail. The group areas are not right on the lake, but a short walk to the lake. I don't know when for sure they open the entire campground, but there are enough sites available to accomodate your group. There is also a "bath House" at the south beach area and I'm not sure if there's showers in there or not. Sheridan is also closer to Rapid and Hill City for an evening meal/liquid refreshments and lower elevation than Deerfield so a little warmer. Here is the link to the Forest Service site on Sheridan Lake and you can call for details.
    Black Hills National Forest - Sheridan Lake Complex
    PM me closer to time and I may be able to show you some trails to start on. I'm an a full time student now, and done on 12 May, so I may have time on my hands after that. I'm "older" and slower, but I have provided guide service for beer.
    Very helpful. If we wanted to be a bit more remote, but still accessible to riding, where you suggest?

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    Camping is permitted anywhere in the Black Hills (dispersed camping), but you can not have a camp fire, which you may want that time of year for warmth and to dry out. Another issue could be a problem that time of year for dispersed camping is sogy ground. Weather is very unpredictable in May. Whereas an established cg is compacted and would be less sogy. If solitude is what you're looking for before Memorial Day the cg's are not busy at all.
    Probably the most remote is a place called Dalton Lake (more like pond) near a little place called Nemo. You're only close to one good trail there though and you can ride that mostly in a day. Deerfield is probably the most remote of the established camp grounds (cg) that I can think of that has good access to riding. There are other more remote smaller camp grounds, but they are not as close to the trails that I know. Pactola has some nice camping, and is in between Deerfield and Sheridan as far as "remotness" goes. The main issue with some smaller cg's is they don't open till the weekend before Memorial Day.
    Hope this helps, maybe someone else will chime in with another perspective on this.

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    Sheridan would be a good choice. I agree that dispersed camping might be rough, soft that time of year. With that size of a group, check out bear gulch group campground on the lake at pactola and the group campground off of Sheridan lake. Bear gulch is $85 a night, but you'll have the place to yourself. A little further from the trails, but remote and quiet. Pactola pines marina has coin operated showers for anyone to use also, you don't need to be camping there, just an FYI. I agree also with what was said about Dalton lake earlier also. Dispersed camping can be done, I would think somewhere off of Victoria lake road close to the centennial trail would be remote, and plenty of spots to pull off and pitch a tent. High clearance vehicles needed for many of the dispersed camping areas, Subaru's will work for most of Victoria lake rd but might not be enough for others, thought I'd let you know since everyone in Colorado drives a Subaru.

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    Quote Originally Posted by slickrockross View Post
    Sheridan would be a good choice. I agree that dispersed camping might be rough, soft that time of year. With that size of a group, check out bear gulch group campground on the lake at pactola and the group campground off of Sheridan lake. Bear gulch is $85 a night, but you'll have the place to yourself. A little further from the trails, but remote and quiet. Pactola pines marina has coin operated showers for anyone to use also, you don't need to be camping there, just an FYI. I agree also with what was said about Dalton lake earlier also. Dispersed camping can be done, I would think somewhere off of Victoria lake road close to the centennial trail would be remote, and plenty of spots to pull off and pitch a tent. High clearance vehicles needed for many of the dispersed camping areas, Subaru's will work for most of Victoria lake rd but might not be enough for others, thought I'd let you know since everyone in Colorado drives a Subaru.
    Despite popular myth, not everyone in Colorado has a Suburu. They also have Tacomas.*

    Sounds like, all in, Sheridan Lake is the spot. I am going to reserve two 8 person spots next to one another by the lake.

    *I drive a Chevy Silverado.

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    Booked a group site at the end of the road at Sheridan Lake. Now the important part, lets discuss rides. We will be arriving Friday afternoon, so need a good shorter ride then. Need an all day ride for Saturday and something shorter on Sunday for our drive out...

    Learn me folks

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    If you have 3 hours to ride Friday, I would either head over to storm mt and ride that loop. It can be ridin in an hour, but with a large group and playing around expect 2-3 hours. Buzzards roost is another great afternoon ride, and close to rapid if you need to stop for supplies. Saturday I would ride the centennial trail from Dalton lake either as an out and back as far as you can, or shuttle cars and ride from Dalton lake to alkali creek trailhead. In my opinion, it's one of the best epics that is well marked and easy to follow. Otherwise, if you want a 25 mile loop Victoria' secret to loop 15 is an awesome ride. May need a guide, but it maybe marked for a race during the festival on memorial day weekend. Not really any maps for victoria's secret, but acme has a map of loop 15. Sunday morning may be a good time to ride storm mt also on your way out, or ride north on the centennial trail out of Sheridan lake campground. It's just a rough guide, but in my opinion these are the easiest to follow trails, and some of my favorites. there are many other great rides out here but many are hard to follow if you don't know where to go. Others may have some suggestions also, so please chime in. Also, the rides are always more enjoyable with a guide, so let us know. I'm always looking for an excuse to ride.

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    Quote Originally Posted by slickrockross View Post
    If you have 3 hours to ride Friday, I would either head over to storm mt and ride that loop. It can be ridin in an hour, but with a large group and playing around expect 2-3 hours. Buzzards roost is another great afternoon ride, and close to rapid if you need to stop for supplies. Saturday I would ride the centennial trail from Dalton lake either as an out and back as far as you can, or shuttle cars and ride from Dalton lake to alkali creek trailhead. In my opinion, it's one of the best epics that is well marked and easy to follow. Otherwise, if you want a 25 mile loop Victoria' secret to loop 15 is an awesome ride. May need a guide, but it maybe marked for a race during the festival on memorial day weekend. Not really any maps for victoria's secret, but acme has a map of loop 15. Sunday morning may be a good time to ride storm mt also on your way out, or ride north on the centennial trail out of Sheridan lake campground. It's just a rough guide, but in my opinion these are the easiest to follow trails, and some of my favorites. there are many other great rides out here but many are hard to follow if you don't know where to go. Others may have some suggestions also, so please chime in. Also, the rides are always more enjoyable with a guide, so let us know. I'm always looking for an excuse to ride.
    Very helpful, thank you. I think we will lock down Centennial from Dalton to Alkali on Saturday. Any thoughts on the Deerfield Lake loop? Sounds like Storm Mtn and Buzzards are must-dos, so likely those on Friday and leave some low hanging fruit for Sunday if we are not too hung over.

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