USDA Forest Service, Black Hills National Forest
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Welcome to the Black Hills National Forest
Described as an “Island in the Plains,” the multiple-use Black Hills National Forest has an activity for everyone. Explore the many formations, canyons and gulches, open grasslands, tumbling streams, and deep blue lakes.
Photo: Pactola Reservoir by Black Hills National Forest/USDA Forest Service
The Black Hills, in western South Dakota and northeastern Wyoming, consists of 1.2 million acres of forested hills and mountains, approximately 110 miles long and 70 miles wide.
The name "Black Hills" comes from the Lakota words Paha Sapa, which mean "hills that are black." Seen from a distance, these pine-covered hills, rising several thousand feet above the surrounding prairie, appear black.
Millions of visitors come to the Black Hills each year to experience the rich and diverse heritage.
The Black Hills National Forest is open, free of charge, for your use and enjoyment. Fees may be charged and permits required for some activities and locations, including camping and parking fees.
The Forest Service publishes a variety of map products to help you enjoy your visit. Many maps and brochures are available online and more options are available at our Forest offices.
The Black Hills offers over 3,600 miles of motorized travel on the forest, including over 700 miles of system trails.
Black Hills National Forest officials are reminding the public that fireworks are prohibited on the Black Hills National Forest and within the Black Hills Fire Protection District.
Experience the Forest like never before with this beautiful video featuring "Dazzling rock formations, beautiful pine forests, incredible wildlife, mesmerizing magic hour and an insane amount of recreation opportunities..."
Memorial Day through Labor Day, campground reservations may be made through Recreation.gov at 1-877-444-6777 or online at Recreation.gov. Due to high demand, reservations are recommended.
The Forest has four Ranger Districts and a Forest Supervisor’s Office. Offices are located in Sundance and Newcastle, Wyoming and Custer, Rapid City and Spearfish, South Dakota.
During its 27th year of guided hikes, Forest visitors will learn about local fire history and the important role it plays, about critters that prefer the night, the relationships between the Civilian Conservation Corps and Forest, and about bats and their role in the Black Hills and Bearlodge Mountains.
Join the Songbird of the Black Hills, Sally Svenson, for an evening of campfire music (sing-a-longs included) and the Black Hills stories behind her original songs.
The Black Hills National Forest and South Dakota Game, Fish, and Parks Department are teaming up and offering educational programs at the Pactola Visitor Center.
Fourth of July Fire Safety on the Black Hills National Forest
Release Date: Jun 30, 2022
Fuel Break to Reduce the Risk of Wildfire at Boxelder Job Corps Civilian Conservation Center
Release Date: Jun 28, 2022
The Black Hills National Forest is beginning the process of revising its current Plan which was first released in 1983, revised in 1997 and amended in 2006.
- Off-Highway Vehicle Workshop Collaboration
- Timber Sustainability on the Black Hills National Forest
- Westside Vegetation Management Project
- Spruce Vegetation Management Project
- Current Forest Road & Trail Closures & Conditions (updated Jan. 20, 2022)
- Want to Fly a Drone?
Jeff Tomac, Forest Supervisor