The South Dakota Black Hills are among America’s most scenic landscapes. Deep in the hills lie rugged ATV trails that offer lots of attractions and amenities for ATV riders of all skill levels.
Below, we survey some of the trail highlights according to tourists and locals who take on the rugged terrain each season.
Antelope Springs Trailhead, Hill City South Dakota
The Antelope Springs Trailhead offers a little something for everyone depending on where you ride. Much of trail lies deep within a flat landscape that is surrounded by blue skies, deep lakes, and lots of trees. Riders are likely to see wildlife throughout the trails. The trail is long, so you’ll want to plan for an overnight stay or turn back at a given point.
Local attractions include: numerous creeks and springs, as well as attractions such as Moon Ghost Town, Preacher’s Homestead, Summit Ridge Fire Tower, and Beaver Creek Campground.
Blacktail Trailhead, Sundance, Wyoming
If you have some ATV riding experience and high-end rugged ATV, then Blacktail Trailhead may be worth checking out. Some trails are narrow — in some areas only 50 inches wide — with dense grass, shrubs, and tree canopies.
Although rocks line the paths on both sides, they are more or fewer dirt trails, which become muddy after a rain or snow. So if being caked in mud is your thing, you should try to the Blacktail Trailhead.
Local attractions include: Devils Tower overlook, Sundance campgrounds, Custer’s Inyan Kara Camp, and the Bearlodge National Forest campgrounds.
Bluebird Trailhead, Custer, South Dakota
Several small canyons in the Black Hills area surround the cities of Custer, Senator, and Pringle. This area contains one of the most enjoyable ATV trails in the Black Hills — the Bluebird Trailhead. The trail winds through the beautiful limestone canyon. Local riders recommend heading East or South once you get to the end of the trail. From there you can catch a view of the Ward Reservoir, McClure Dam, and other sites.
Local attractions include: ghost towns, Argyle and Pringle, 12-mile Stagecoach Ranch, and plenty of reservoirs and dams.
South Boxelder Trailhead, Nemo, South Dakota
Ever the tourist’s favorite, The South Boxelder Trailhead is the epicenter of the trailblazing South Dakota. Boxelder is not for lightweights. Extreme parts of the trail contain extreme bends that descend at steep grades. Locals there recommend Trail 8089 between 8252 intersections and 8251 — if you think you can handle it. The good news is that other parts of the trail are suitable for families, beginners, and intermediate riders.
Local attractions include: caves, creeks, historical graves, the Nemo Guest Ranch, and the Forks Campground.
Dalton Lake Trailhead, Sturgis, South Dakota
Dalton Lake is known for its scenic campground and picnic areas, lake views, and access to countless trails all around. The Lake contains multi-machine trails that accommodate ATVs, UTVs, side-by-sides, and dirt bikes. The riders fill up the area with engine roars as far as you can hear. It’s the perfect area for setting up a base camp
Local attractions include: expansive lakes, picnic areas, campgrounds, and multi-use trails.
CFMOTO is Your ATV and Side-by-Side Authority
If you are looking for high-end, no-nonsense ATVs and side-by-sides to hit the trails, then visit a CFMOTO distributor near you. We offer a wide selection of all-terrain vehicles for all riding levels from beginner to expert.
To find out more about our line of all-terrain vehicles, visit or contact a CFMOTO dealer near you.