Best hiking trails in Custer State Park
The best way to see the bison herds, and to experience the natural beauty of the park, is to get out there and explore it for yourself using the signposted hiking trails to keep you on the right path. After a long day on your feet, head back to one of the Custer State Park hotels to relax.
1. Cathedral Spires
This difficult two-mile hiking trail is well worth the effort for the fantastic views you can enjoy of the high peaks along the Needles Highway.
2. Creekside Trail
This is a much easier trail which follows the path of Grace Coolidge Creek, taking hikers to the Peter Norbeck Visitor Center, where you can learn more about the history and ecology of the area, and is where you'll find the local general store.
3. French Creek
The 12-mile French Creek hiking trail takes visitors into the most remote parts of Custer State Park, and into the French Creek Natural Area.
Great Places to Stay Near Custer State Park
Best family activities in Custer State Park
A vacation in one of the many Custer State Park cabins is ideal for families. Kids love seeing the wild bison herds, and there are lots of other activities within the park to suit children of all ages.
1. Sylvan Lake
There are five lakes within Custer State Park, but Sylvan Lake is definitely the most picturesque and is ideal for swimming in the summer months.
2. Gordon Stockade
Visit a replica of the log fortress built by the first gold rush settlers in the 1870s. The Gordon Stockade is open between June and August, and is a fascinating way to learn about the history of the area.
3. Junior Naturalists
Through the summer months, children can take part in Custer State Park's Junior Naturalist program; learning new skills and taking part in activities organized by park rangers.
4. Pups Program
Even young children are catered for at Custer State Park. The Pups Program aims to educate even the youngest visitors about the park's unique natural environment.
5. Buffalo Safari
The best way to see Custer State Park's wild bison is to take an organized tour. Off-road jeep tours help you get close to the park's wildlife, although the bison are easy enough to spot from your own car as you drive through the park.