Rochford, South Dakota, home of the Moonshine Gulch Saloon, the Rochford Small (building on the right with a flag), is a popular destination for ATVers and motorcycle riders. The town can be reached via a paved road south from US85 west of Lead or via a gravel road west from US385.
Small Black Hills Towns
In addition to the main tourist towns listed elsewhere on this site, the Black Hills has numerous other small towns that may be, in some cases, only a few scattered buildings. This page lists some of those towns and their claims to fame.
- Mystic -- An old railroad center with some rail buildings and artifacts still in place. Popular with rail fans and others interested in the history of Black Hills railroads. Mystic is located along a popular stage of the Mickelson Trail and near two of the trail's hard rock tunnels. It is just down stream from Castle Creek, a popular stream for gold panners. The town consists mostly of vacation homes nowadays.
- Rochford -- Located on the upper reaches of Rapid Creek, Rochford is home to one of the last operating placer gold mines in the Black Hills. It is in the heart of an area popular with ATV riders and home to the Moonshine Gulch Saloon. You could say the town is a little rough around the edges.
- Rockerville -- Once a thriving placer mining community, then a thriving tourist town, Rockerville was reduced to not much more than a restaurant and motel when a new highway went around it, rather than through it.
- Edgemont -- A boom-and-bust town just southwest of the Black Hills. Still a minor commercial center, Edgemont is just northeast of the Igloo Ordnance Depot, which has been closed for many years. Visitors to the Black Hills flying into Rapid City often see what remains of the vast complex from the air and wonder what it is. The concrete igloos, in their thousands, were concrete bunkers where explosives were stored beginning in World War II.
- Pringle -- What can one say about this town, northeast of Hot Springs, that shares its name with a potato chip.
- Nemo -- Once a stop on a narrow-gauge railroad between Deadwood and some limestone quarries near Piedmont, the town now consists of a few buildings and a guest ranch. Located just west of Steamboat Rock, a large limestone plateau, the area is scenic.
- Silver City -- A small village located at the head of Pactola Lake is a good launching point for a hike upstream on the Deerfield Trail along Rapid Creek. The trail follows the roadbed of the old Conch Railroad Line which ran between Rapid City and Mystic. From Silver City the trail leads west through a steep canyon every bit as beautiful as the much more famous Spearfish Canyon.
- Buffalo Gap -- Only a few dozen houses these days, (2000 population 164) but once a roaring railhead town where ranchers from all over western South Dakota delivered their cattle for shipment to the East. The town once had 48 saloons and other recreational facilities. Nearby is Calico Canyon with a natural bridge and a quarry which once produced the famous Calico Canyon Sandstone, a variety noted for its many colors. Some 25 buildings in the old downtown have been designated a national historic district. The town is also near Buffalo Gap National Grassland.
- Belle Fourche -- Pronounced Bell Foosch, or simply Belle by the locals, Belle Fource on the north fork of the Cheyenne River is primarily a commercial center these days except for the Belle Fourche Roundup -- one of the nation's oldest and longest-running rodeos.
- Hulett, Wyoming -- A small town north of Devil's Tower made famous by the Sturgis Motorcycle Rally as the place to go. The town is mostly asleep the rest of the year.
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