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  1. #1
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    Riding in the Black Hills Area

    I may be going to the Black Hills this summer for a week long family trip. I was wondering if anyone had any recommended routes or areas to ride. It's an extended family thing, so I think a few hours away in the morning would be a welcome respite for me. I'm always up a few hours before everyone else anyway. This would probably be on my road bike only, as we will likely only have room for one bike.

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    Quote Originally Posted by bilbo View Post
    I may be going to the Black Hills this summer for a week long family trip. I was wondering if anyone had any recommended routes or areas to ride. It's an extended family thing, so I think a few hours away in the morning would be a welcome respite for me. I'm always up a few hours before everyone else anyway. This would probably be on my road bike only, as we will likely only have room for one bike.
    Needles highway is a real treat but be sure to get out before the tourist traffic builds. There is a long rail trail (Mickelson Trail) but it is not paved so wider tires are appropriate. I've not personally ridden it so I don't know the details of the surface but you certainly can do some research on that. Be prepared for lots of climbing, and steep climbs at that.

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    Quote Originally Posted by bilbo View Post
    I may be going to the Black Hills this summer for a week long family trip. I was wondering if anyone had any recommended routes or areas to ride. It's an extended family thing, so I think a few hours away in the morning would be a welcome respite for me. I'm always up a few hours before everyone else anyway. This would probably be on my road bike only, as we will likely only have room for one bike.
    Thanks for being descriptive enough so that the other 99.5% of us who have no idea where this magical place that you're going to is feel included in the conversation.
    The world doesn't revolve around you.
    ???
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    I'm confused. The Black Hills are in Western South Dakota. Those without an idea of where that magical place is probably don't have much to offer for advice on where to ride. At any rate, thanks for the info Kerry Irons; I'll check out Needles Highway and the Mickelson Trail.

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    Quote Originally Posted by 9W9W View Post
    Thanks for being descriptive enough so that the other 99.5% of us who have no idea where this magical place that you're going to is feel included in the conversation.
    The world doesn't revolve around you.
    ???
    here, let me get that for you.
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    I've been planning to go there this September myself. I have not yet been there, but have been doing some research - and the photos I've seen have me salivating. I plan to take my Checkpoint all-road bike so I will be riding the Mickelson Trail but I also plan to do a ride on the Wildlife Loop Road in Custer State Park at the very least. That is probably only a 30-40 mile loop but there are other roads nearby that can add to it if you have more time.
    Life is short... enjoy the ride.

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    Quote Originally Posted by bradkay View Post
    I've been planning to go there this September myself. I have not yet been there, but have been doing some research - and the photos I've seen have me salivating. I plan to take my Checkpoint all-road bike so I will be riding the Mickelson Trail but I also plan to do a ride on the Wildlife Loop Road in Custer State Park at the very least. That is probably only a 30-40 mile loop but there are other roads nearby that can add to it if you have more time.
    Parts of Custer State Park can be an issue with bison charging the road. Last time we were there we were advised by the rangers not to ride our bikes in some spots. Not sure if it was the Wildlife Loop.

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    Quote Originally Posted by 9W9W View Post
    Thanks for being descriptive enough so that the other 99.5% of us who have no idea where this magical place that you're going to is feel included in the conversation.
    The world doesn't revolve around you.
    ???
    I think I can help.

    The Black Hills are in South Dakota and are home of Mount Rushmore (likely the largest / most famous modern sculpture in the World). The sculpture contains likenesses of four past United States Presidents. South Dakota is one of the United States represented by those Presidents. The United States are part of North America which is a continent on Planet Earth.

    I've had previously assumed that more than .5% of the population knew the above or at least how to find out. I apparently overestimated the state of Planet Earths education systems and apologize. This flawed belief was likely the result of thinking the world revolves around me.

    I now realize that not everybody was fortunate enough to attend 2nd grade--just because I was.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by SwiftSolo View Post
    I think I can help.

    The Black Hills are in South Dakota and are home of Mount Rushmore (likely the largest / most famous modern sculpture in the World). The sculpture contains likenesses of four past United States Presidents. South Dakota is one of the United States represented by those Presidents. The United States are part of North America which is a continent on Planet Earth.

    I've had previously assumed that more than .5% of the population knew the above or at least how to find out. I apparently overestimated the state of Planet Earths education systems and apologize. This flawed belief was likely the result of thinking the world revolves around me.

    I now realize that not everybody was fortunate enough to attend 2nd grade--just because I was.
    You were taught geography in second grade, but not punctuation or capitalization?

    Ok.
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  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kerry Irons View Post
    Parts of Custer State Park can be an issue with bison charging the road. Last time we were there we were advised by the rangers not to ride our bikes in some spots. Not sure if it was the Wildlife Loop.
    Danger aside... itís great to see the comeback Bison are making!
    To date, philosophers have merely interpreted the world in various ways. The point however is to change it.

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    Quote Originally Posted by xxl View Post
    You were taught geography in second grade, but not punctuation or capitalization?

    Ok.
    It's good to have someone fresh out of second grade to point that out.

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    Quote Originally Posted by SwiftSolo View Post
    It's good to have someone fresh out of second grade to point that out.
    It'd probably would be better if someone fresh out of second grade had pointed it out to you, instead of me doing so, because then you could deal with someone on your own level, trade geography notes with them, and they could explain to you the rules of capitalization and how possessive apostrophes work.
    More Americans wanted Hillary Clinton to be President than wanted Donald Trump.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Kerry Irons View Post
    Parts of Custer State Park can be an issue with bison charging the road. Last time we were there we were advised by the rangers not to ride our bikes in some spots. Not sure if it was the Wildlife Loop.
    That is always a possibility in wildlife management/viewing areas. I remember a nervous moment with bison in Yellowstone some years back. if the road is closed to bikes when I am there, the road is closed. If not, i may be forced to turn back by a herd of bison. I am not foolish enough to risk serious injury by forcing my way through...
    Life is short... enjoy the ride.

  14. #14
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    Of course, another danger in visiting the Black Hills is running afoul of a jilted lover with a quick trigger finger...
    Life is short... enjoy the ride.

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    Quote Originally Posted by xxl View Post
    It'd probably would be better if someone fresh out of second grade had pointed it out to you, instead of me doing so, because then you could deal with someone on your own level, trade geography notes with them, and they could explain to you the rules of capitalization and how possessive apostrophes work.
    You're telling me that children beyond 3rd grade point out punctuation errors on internet forums? It must be that 5th grade is the new 3rd.

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    Itís remarkable that 9W9W posted the snarky reply, then XXL and SwiftSolo get into it, with no further input from 9W. What is it with you guys, do you really need to argue over stupid stuff like this ?

    I would have thought most people would know where the Black Hills are located. Mt. Rushmore, etc... apparently not.

    My only useful contribution to bradkay would be to know that in the Black Hills area is Sturgis, SD. Home of the annual Harley Davidson ralley, with upwards of 100,000 visiting motorcyclists. Held in 2019 from 8/2 to 8/11. Itís an understatement to say the region is inundated with motorcycles, with lodging an issue. Thus maybe choose a different week.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Steve B. View Post
    Itís remarkable that 9W9W posted the snarky reply, then XXL and SwiftSolo get into it, with no further input from 9W. What is it with you guys, do you really need to argue over stupid stuff like this ?

    I would have thought most people would know where the Black Hills are located. Mt. Rushmore, etc... apparently not.

    My only useful contribution to bradkay would be to know that in the Black Hills area is Sturgis, SD. Home of the annual Harley Davidson ralley, with upwards of 100,000 visiting motorcyclists. Held in 2019 from 8/2 to 8/11. Itís an understatement to say the region is inundated with motorcycles, with lodging an issue. Thus maybe choose a different week.
    Some people just don't know how to act once they get out of PO.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Steve B. View Post
    I would have thought most people would know where the Black Hills are located. Mt. Rushmore, etc... apparently not.

    My only useful contribution to bradkay would be to know that in the Black Hills area is Sturgis, SD. Home of the annual Harley Davidson ralley, with upwards of 100,000 visiting motorcyclists. Held in 2019 from 8/2 to 8/11. Itís an understatement to say the region is inundated with motorcycles, with lodging an issue. Thus maybe choose a different week.
    Thanks, but I knew about that already. Besides, my preference is to take my vacation in mid-September (a month after the Sturgis rally) because both motels and campgrounds are much less full, yet still open. Also, with kids back in school, there are fewer rented RVs out on the roads where I like to ride (the retirees, as bad of drivers as they are, generally do know how to drive their RVs)..
    Life is short... enjoy the ride.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Kerry Irons View Post
    Needles highway is a real treat but be sure to get out before the tourist traffic builds. There is a long rail trail (Mickelson Trail) but it is not paved so wider tires are appropriate. I've not personally ridden it so I don't know the details of the surface but you certainly can do some research on that. Be prepared for lots of climbing, and steep climbs at that.
    The George Mickelson trail is high up on my bucket list. If you start at the north end at Deadwood, it's about 4,600 elevation and climbs to over 6,000, but nothing over 4% grade from what I've researched. Mount Rushmore is about 12 miles from the trail, and even better, the Chief Crazy Horse memorial is very close to the trail.

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    Quote Originally Posted by ogre View Post
    The George Mickelson trail is high up on my bucket list. If you start at the north end at Deadwood, it's about 4,600 elevation and climbs to over 6,000, but nothing over 4% grade from what I've researched. Mount Rushmore is about 12 miles from the trail, and even better, the Chief Crazy Horse memorial is very close to the trail.
    The Mickelson Trail is my main reason for planning this trip, as it is also high on my bucket list - which needs to be addressed soon... It is a major reason I purchased an "all-road" bike (I prefer that term to "gravel" bike), so that I can ride that trail and yet not be limited on the paved road rides in the area by using a mountain bike.

    Since I like to car camp on these trips I am happy to say that I have found that there is a forest service campground, the Oreville Campground, just a few hundred yards from the trail between the towns of Hill City and Custer. According to the Black Hills NF website, it gets "light use" because it is not one of the campgrounds closest to Mt Rushmore - but for Mickelson Trail users it seems perfect to me. No showers, so you'd best pack a solar shower if you plan to stay there.
    Life is short... enjoy the ride.

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    We will be there in mid-June, so hopefully will avoid most of the motorcycle stuff. I might just bring my hybrid. It sounds like we will be staying in or around Deadwood, and the Mickelson Trail is right there. I use my hybrid mostly for shorter rides around home on the gravel roads, but have done a couple centuries on it. I'd love to use this as an excuse for an all-road type bike as I've been looking at one for a while now, but financially I don't think I could swing it at this time. I've used my road bike with 28c tires on hard gravel enough to be comfortable with it, but it gets pretty squirrely on loose gravel. I'm very excited to do some riding there after looking at photos!

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    Quote Originally Posted by bradkay View Post
    That is always a possibility in wildlife management/viewing areas. I remember a nervous moment with bison in Yellowstone some years back. if the road is closed to bikes when I am there, the road is closed. If not, i may be forced to turn back by a herd of bison. I am not foolish enough to risk serious injury by forcing my way through...
    The difference between Yellowstone and Custer regarding bison is the size of the herd!

  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by SwiftSolo View Post
    You're telling me that children beyond 3rd grade point out punctuation errors on internet forums? It must be that 5th grade is the new 3rd.
    Only to someone who claims to have attended (but did you pass?) second grade and who hasn't mastered it, but thinks he should go ahead and derisively point out geographic facts to others.

    Fifth grade may indeed be the new third grade; let us know when you get there.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Steve B. View Post
    Itís remarkable that 9W9W posted the snarky reply, then XXL and SwiftSolo get into it, with no further input from 9W. What is it with you guys, do you really need to argue over stupid stuff like this ?

    I would have thought most people would know where the Black Hills are located. Mt. Rushmore, etc... apparently not.

    My only useful contribution to bradkay would be to know that in the Black Hills area is Sturgis, SD. Home of the annual Harley Davidson ralley, with upwards of 100,000 visiting motorcyclists. Held in 2019 from 8/2 to 8/11. Itís an understatement to say the region is inundated with motorcycles, with lodging an issue. Thus maybe choose a different week.

    Need to? No.
    More Americans wanted Hillary Clinton to be President than wanted Donald Trump.

    Donald Trump has never had a wife he didn't cheat on.

  25. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by velodog View Post
    Some people just don't know how to act once they get out of PO.
    Or when they're in PO:

    Originally Posted by velodog
    Have you got worms in your head, or is your problem worse than that?
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