Northern Black Hills

The Northern Hill Ranger District is in the northern Black Hills National Forest and has an office in Spearfish, SD.

Community of Spearfish, SD

Spearfish is located 45 miles west of Rapid City, South Dakota and 10 miles east of the South Dakota/Wyoming state line. It is also located about 400 miles northeast of Denver, Colorado and 500 miles west of Minneapolis, Minnesota. Interstate 90 is adjacent to the town. Elevation is 3,680 feet above sea level. Population is over 12,000 (as of 2022), including nearby developments. Spearfish is a thriving, scenic community. It is immediately adjacent to the northernmost slopes of the Black Hills.

Temperatures are moderate, though seasonal, with warm, dry summers and cold, snowy winters. Average rainfall is 22 inches, and average snowfall is 31 inches. Prevailing winds are from the northwest. The average annual mean temperature is 47.5 degrees, with an average January temperature of 26.6 degrees and an average July temperature of 72.6 degrees. Spearfish offers a 4-year university (Black Hills State University) and a public library. It contains numerous churches, motels, grocery stores, and banks. There is a hospital and nursing home in town. A variety of dental and medical services are available. The town offers 2 newspapers, indoor theaters, and radio stations. Telephone, cable television and internet provider services are also available. Spearfish has a police and volunteer fire department, emergency medical technicians, city offices and many retail businesses.

The nearest airport is Black Hills Airport 4 miles east of Spearfish; commercial airline service is available at Rapid City Regional Airport 55 miles east of Spearfish.

Recreation facilities include a golf course, bowling alley, soccer and baseball fields, tennis and horseshoe courts, museums, parks, a large indoor fitness and athletic center, a city campground, and several private campgrounds.

Forest Service campgrounds are available within 15 miles of town. Access to over 300 miles of snowmobile trails, groomed and ungroomed cross-country ski trails, a 100-mile long hiking trail (Centennial Trail), a 110-mile long biking, hiking and horseback trail (Mickelson Trail), and 2 downhill ski areas is nearby.

For more information on the Spearfish community, contact the Spearfish Chamber of Commerce at

More communities located in the northern Black Hills: