Rapid Creek Trailhead & Fishing access

Rapid Creek Trailhead is located in the basin of Pactola Reservoir.  From Rapid City, travel about 15 miles west on Highway 44.  Turn south (left) onto Highway 385 and continue for 2 miles, you will be right on top of the dam.  Turn east (left) onto Pactola Basin Road.  Wind all the way to the bottom for .5 miles.  The trailhead is located adjacent to Rapid Creek which makes it a popular area for fishing enthusiasts as well.   Restroom facilities are available during summer months.

At a Glance

Fees: free
Open Season: January
Usage: Light
Closest Towns: Rapid City, SD
Water: No
Restroom: Yes
Operated By: Forest Service

General Information

Directions: From Rapid City take Highway 44 approx 15 miles west to Highway 385; turn left or south and travel 2.5 miles to middle of dam; turn left on Pactola Basin Road; travel to bottom of hill; go over bridge; park right for spilling basin and left for trailhead

Recreation Map

Map showing recreational areas. Map Information


Mountain Biking

River and Stream Fishing

fishing in the spilling basin and creek as the water comes out of Pactola Reservoir; no live bait; catch and release only
Water Temperature cold

Day Hiking


Horse Riding

Recreation Areas

Recreation Activities

Featured Events


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