Outdoor Recreation in Rapid City
Looking for some of the greatest recreational adventures? Scenic wonders spread in every direction of Rapid City. Rapid City is the hub to magnificent attractions, entertaining activities and thrilling adventures. We are in close proximity to area ski resorts, six national parks and mountain lakes and streams for water sports. One of the region’s largest in-city bike paths stretches for miles, showcasing some of Rapid City’s best sites and providing a safe place for biking, hiking and running.
Biking and Hiking
Within the city limits you’ll find 13.5 miles of trail that wind along Rapid Creek and connect with many city parks. Rapid City’s urban mountain park features the Hanson-Larsen Memorial Park, which offers over 20 miles of trails for every skill level; and the Skyline Wilderness Area, an urban wilderness area, features walking, biking and hiking trails less than a mile from downtown. Wide shouldered highways are also a favorite among road bike enthusiasts. The most popular rides are Rapid City to Mount Rushmore, Needles Highway, Iron Mountain Road, Spearfish Canyon Scenic Byway and the Badlands Loop Road. All have some steep grades and long climbs but the scenery is worth it.
Camping and Fishing
Campgrounds can accommodate tents, campers and RVs. Many also offer sleeping or full-service cabin rentals. You might even want to experience one of the area’s mountain lakes or fresh-water streams that are brimming with brook, brown and rainbow trout. Within minutes of the city you’ll find Pactola Reservoir and Sheridan Lake, which have boat launches, beaches and canoe and kayak rentals.
Rapid City is centrally located to some of the Midwest’s most beautiful private and public golf courses. With almost one-hundred holes of golf, numerous golfing events and tournaments that appeal to a wide variety of golfing interests, Rapid City is a golf haven for everyone from the competitive to the purely social golfer.
Arrowhead Country Club | 18 holes
3675 Sheridan Lake Rd. | (605) 342-6477
Golf Club at Red Rock | 18 holes
6520 Birkdale Rd.| (605) 718-4710
Rapid City Elks | 18 holes
3333 Jolly Ln. | (605) 393-0522
Executive | 9 holes
200 12th St. | (605) 394-4124
Fountain Springs | 9 holes
1750 Fountain Plaza Dr. | (605) 342-4653
Hart Ranch | 18 holes
23645 Clubhouse Dr.| (605) 341-5703
Meadowbrook | 18 holes
3625 Jackson Blvd. | (605) 394-4191
YMCA LaCroix Links | 9 holes
3820 Odde Dr. | (605) 718-9953
As the region that’s known for famous rock formations, the Black Hills is home to diverse rock climbing areas, ranging from granite spires with 300-foot ascents to rock mazes with moderate boulder challenges. A favorite destination for technical climbing that’s just six miles from Rapid City is Falling Rock, where you can explore the edges and pockets of a limestone canyon.
- Rapid City Swim Center and Ice Arena
- The Tennis Center of the Black Hills
- Private health clubs that offer aerobics, yoga, racquetball, climbing walls, tennis, spinning, strength training, swimming, basketball and volleyball
Rapid City and the Black Hills offer ice hockey, snowmobiling, downhill skiing, groomed trails for cross country skiing, snowshoeing, snow biking and ice fishing in abundance.
- Roosevelt Park
- Wilson Park
- Main Street Square
Rushmore Hockey arena is home to many ice events including hockey tournaments, skating competitions and free skating to the public. If you’re looking for the excitement of professional hockey, the Rushmore Plaza Civic Center is home to the Rapid City Rush, proud ECHL affiliate of the NHL’s Minnesota Wild.
Off-road travel is available for more than 1,500 miles of trails and roads on the 1.2 million acre Black Hills National Forest. Off-road enthusiasts can access and enjoy thousands of those acres by using the Black Hills National Forest Motorized Trail System. Travel routes are segmented into:
- Single track – motorcycle only
- ATV/UTV/motorcycle trails
- Roads & trails open to all vehicles
- Roads open only to highway legal vehicles