ATV/UTV Riding

Black HIlls ATV/UTV Riding

Riding an ATV or UTV in the Black Hills can be both fun and challenging.  Fortunately an extensive trail system offers a wide variety of trails, ranging from simple and scenic to, well, shall we say "slightly more difficult"?

 First Page
Prev. Page
Next Page
Last Page

Guided ATV rides are not available in the Black Hills, however the area has an active ATV club with several members who are retired and are always looking for opportunities to ride. You can check them out on Facebook at ATV/UTV Club on Facebook

     Much of the Black Hills National Forest and other nearby areas are open to most forms of ATV, UTV and other Off-Highway Vehicle (OHV) travel. ATVs and UTVs are also welcome in South Dakota state parks if registered and licensed. It is also legal for licensed ATVs and UTVs to travel on most South Dakota Roads. In short, the Black Hills is a friendly place for ATV and UTV riders.
     Moreover, the Black Hills has something for virtually every type of ATV user. Many US Forest Service roads are open to ATV travelRoosevelt Inn, ATV UTV
        Information although the hills have now been closed to off-road use except on designated trails. Also:  Black Hills National Forest Travel Management Plan Official Map:
     The most recently printed Forest Service map of open forest service roads is effective December 1, 2010, and is to remain in effect until superseded. An on-line version of the map is available at:

Black Hills Forest Travel Map

    The on-line map is in .pdf format is is difficult to read. The printed map, available at forest service offices and at vaious retailers is also less than useful as it shows only the roads and trails that may be used. Because "closed" roads are omitted from this map and signage in the Black Hills is far from complete, it is difficult to know where you are when using this map.  The difficulty is exacerbated by the fact that the map contains absolutely no topographical features. (Even major streams are omitted.) In our opinion, as botched efforts go, this is world class.
    As of this writing there are very few officially sanctioned ATV, ORV or dirt-bike trails in the Black Hills. However, there are numerous ad hoc trails in the Black Hills which may no longer be legally used.
    Part of the proposed travel management plan deals with user fees, which are either $20 for a seven-day sticker or $25 for an annual sticker.  At present the State of South Dakota does not collect user fees, however the State of Wyoming does.
Tours and rentals

    To our knowledge there is no currently operating ATV tour provider in the Black Hills Hills National Forest. Over the years, several have come and gone.
    Guided fishing, hunting, and trail ride activities can be legally provided only by Forest Service "partners" who operate under special use permits. Commercial guides (called "outfitters") are required to pay fees, meet stringent criteria. They are also are restricted to specific routes and must provide detailed information about their operations, such as the size of each group and the date and times of each tour.
   The 2012 "outfitters" list for the Black Hills National Forest contained no ATV trail guides or tour operators. This is not surprising since these rules and conditions are complex, restrictive and expensive.
    For these reasons, if you want to ride in the Black Hills you will probably have to guide yourself. You can often receive help in planning a self-guided tour from various ATV rental operators who can provide you with maps, directions and advice. They may even know a trail-wise local who may want to ride just for the fun of it.
    If you have your own ATV or UTV you might be able to get some advice at your hotel or campground. We help our guests at the Roosevelt Inn, and other places may do so as well. 

For additional information you may contact the following:
Information about most of the Black Hills Forest:

    Black Hills National Forest Service Office
    25041 N. Highway 16, Custer, SD 57730
    Phone: (605) 673-9200

    The Forest Service map of the entire Black Hills with various roads and restricted areas marked is now out of print.  

Information about South Dakota state lands:

    South Dakota Game Fish and Parks
    523 East Capitol Avenue
    Pierre, SD 57501
    Parks and Recreation information 605) 773-3391
    Wildlife Division --
    Parks and Recreation --
    Custer State Park--

Other Contacts:
    Buffalo Gap National Grassland
    Phone: (605) 745-4107
    Custer National Forest
    Phone: (605) 797-4432

Roosevelt Inn
Roosevelt Inn



We are centrally located in the Black Hills near:

Mt. Rushmore
Crazy Horse
Custer State Park
Devil's Tower
Jewel Cave
Wind Cave
The Badlands
1880 Train
Sylvan Lake
The Needles
Hot Springs
Bear Butte
Spearfish Canyon
Wounded Knee
Bear Country
Reptile Gardens
and many other
Black Hills

Hotel phone
8 a.m ~ 10 p.m.