Best South Dakota Horse Trails

South Dakota has 17 horseback rides.

Located in the US, the horseback riding in South Dakota offers over fifteen beautiful and scenic horse trail rides. The best South Dakota horseback riding based on popularity are considered to be Centential Trail, Centennial Trail, Mickelson Trail, Big Hill Trails, and Deerfield Trail. For a detailed trail description and printable trailhead map, just select a South Dakota horseback riding trail below.


Centential Trail

In the Black Hills, the 73,000 acre Custer State Park has miles of horseback riding trails through ponderosa pine covered mountains and prairies. All horseback riding trails are marked with blue diamonds on a brow post. While riding, keep an eye out for herds of buffalo and antelop.  MORE INFO

Big Hill Trails

South of Spearfish in the Black Hills National Forest, the Big Hill Trails is a network of five horseback riding trails totaling 10+ miles. All of the maintained trails in the forest are marked with blazes and brown fiberglass posts. Blazes are in the form of either a cut in the bark of pine trees or painted on redwood signs. In addition, brown fiberglass posts are used where there are no trees.   MORE INFO

Eagle Cliff Trails

Southwest of Spearfish near Lead in the Black Hills National Forest, the Eagle Cliff Trails is a horseback riding network of 21 trails totaling over 27 miles. The Eagle Cliff Trails were originally developed by local cross country skiing enthusiasts in the mid 1980's. This trail system became popular among other recreationists, such has horseback riders, because of the opportunity to create your own adventure. With twenty-one intertwining loop and dead-end trails, the system offers fun and challenge at every turn. The trails range from short, to rugged and remote, to longer looping trails with a range of difficulty. The opportunity to combine trails and create a unique experience is only one of the highlights of this system.  MORE INFO

Bear Butte State Park

Near Sturgis, the Bear Butte State Park has horseback riding trails. While there are only 2 miles of trails within the park, it does provide access to the Centennial Trail which rolls through the Black Hills. The park has a horse camp with a corral and numerous primative campsites, although reservations are highly recommended.  MORE INFO

Old Baldy Trail

Near Lead in the Black Hills National Forest, the Old Baldy Trail is a 5.7 mile horseback loop with a 0.7 mile spur trail to the summit. The Old Baldy Trail loop meanders through stands of quaking aspen, paper birch, and ponderosa pine. From the loop, the spur trail continues up to the summit of Old Baldy Mountain. The view from the top of Old Baldy Mountain includes Crow Peak to the north, Ragged Top and Terry Peak to the east, and Cement Ridge Lookout to the west.  MORE INFO

Oakwood Lakes State Park

Near Bruce, the Oakwood Lakes State Park has a couple miles of horseback riding. Within the park, there are 2.5 miles of horse trails winding around the eight natural lakes on peninsulas. Since these trails are multi-use, beaware of both hikers and mountain bikers. Within the park, there is a horse camp with primative campsites and corrals.  MORE INFO

Union Grove State Park

Near Canton, the Union County State Park has plenty of horseback riding. Within the park, there are 4 miles of marked horse trails that are spread across 150 acres. The routes roll thru hills with plenty of dense native plants. There is a horse camp that has electrical campsites and a corral (reservation are highly recommended).  MORE INFO

Deerfield Trail

Near Rochford in the Black Hills National Forest, the Deerfield Trail is a 28 mile non-motorized horseback riding trail complex. This trail connects the Deerfield recreation area with the rest of the Black Hills on more than 200 miles of trail, including the Centennial Trail and the George S. Mickelson Trail. The routes can be shared with hikers, mountain bikers and cross counrty skiers so make sure to exercise care when riding.  MORE INFO

Little Spearfish / Rimrock Trails

Near Lead in the Black Hills National Forest, the Little Spearfish / Rimrock Trail System consists of two loops open to horseback riding. The Little Spearfish Trail Loop is 5.9 miles. The Rimrock Trail Loop is 6.3 miles (for the larger outer loop).  MORE INFO

Lewis - Clark Recreation Area

The Lewis - Clark Recreation Area has 4 miles of horseback riding. The park has 4.1 miles of horse trails along the chalkbluffs. There is a horse camp with electrical campsites and a corral. Since these trails are open to mountain biking and hiking, make sure to use care while riding.  MORE INFO

Shadehill Recreation Area

Northeast of Rapid City near Lemmon, the Shadehill Recreation Area offers an open riding area. With no marked horse trails, equestrians are welcome to ride anywhere across the wide open spaces spread across 6,000 acres of grasslands. There is a horse camp at Hugh Glass Lakeside Use Area which has primative campsites but no corrals (first-come, first-serve).  MORE INFO

Newton Hills State Park

Near Canton, the Newton Hills State Park has 6 miles of horseback riding trails. These marked horse trails are spread across 200 acres of dense forests. Since these trails are also shared with hikers and mountain bikers, use caution when riding. Within the park, there is a horse camp with corrals and electrical power at the campsites (reservations are highly recommended).  MORE INFO

Pelican Lake Recreation Area

Near Watertown, the Pelican Lake Recreation Area has plenty of horseback riding. There are 5.2 miles of horse trails winding through tall prairie grasses and along lakeshore. Since these are multi-use trails, keep an eye out for both mountain bikers and hikers. There is a horse camp that has electrical at the campsites and there is a corral.  MORE INFO

Norbeck Wildlife Preserve Trail System

Southwest of Rapid City in the Black Hills National Forest, the Norbeck Wildlife Preserve has an extensive trail system open to horseback riding. The Norbeck Wildlife Preserve Trail System has 18 trails individually ranging from 0.6 miles to 8.9 miles in length.  MORE INFO