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Old 06-01-2017, 10:17 PM   #1
dodgefather21
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Palmers Gulch KOA

What can we expect ? We are planning a trip to see Mount Rushmore and all the other exciting things around . Does anybody have any suggestions on what's hot and what's not ? How is the facility ?


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Old 06-02-2017, 05:52 AM   #2
gkainz
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see your Welcome post ...

awe heck - I'll copy/paste here ...

Hi John. Welcome to the forum! I tow with a Cummins, too. Grew up in Custer, SD but have been away for so long that I don't have any relevant experience staying in the campgrounds up there.

We were up in the Hills last weekend (caring for sick family - so will have many more trips) and drove through the front part of Palmer Gulch, which looked nice. I know it's gotten good reviews. In KOA tradition, the spots are close, but not nearly as close as some!

We had a family reunion in Jackson Hole, WY and a non-RVing family member picked a KOA up there that had the spots so close, that our slide out touched the awning of the neighbor.

Apparently all those KOA campground guides running around in their golf carts are as much for their own protection as they are for camper's convenience. Spots are so tight that they guide everyone!

Right on the corner of Hwy 16 and 244, I noticed Rafter J Bar campground looks like they've done a lot of upgrade and remodel, but didn't drive thru.

Horsethief Lake is just a few miles east up the road from Palmer Gulch, towards Rushmore, and has a National Park campground (or did?), but I have no idea how many sites it has any more, nor any idea about reservations. Used to be a nice little lake for trout fishing.

If you like fishing, consider a trip up to Deerfield Lake - Deerfield Road exits Hwy 385 to the north west on the north end of Hill City. Nice drive and nice lake.

Other things to see and do - Hot Springs Mammoth Dig, Evans Plunge, Wind Cave National Park (and maybe the cave, but I always recommend Jewel Cave west of Custer over Wind Cave), Custer State Park (and the Wildlife Loop Road), Game Lodge, Needles Highway, 1880 Train, Spearfish Canyon drive... ah sorry - got carried away. One could spend all summer exploring the Black Hills and not see it all.

Anyway, hope you enjoy the Hills on your visit ... I'll wave from I-25 as we pass thru Cheyenne again ... looks like a trip almost every weekend throughout the summer for us.
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Old 06-02-2017, 07:40 AM   #3
dkd04231
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Some thoughts on the area.

Hello, we were in the area last summer and had a great time, very beautiful. We stayed at the Rafter J Bar Ranch, and absolutely loved it. Spacious with a great pool etc. We drove through the KOA to check it out, and it was nice, just kind of tight and very busy. If you have small kids, they would be very happy at the KOA as they did have a lot of activities etc. A must do day trip is a drive through Spearfish Canyon and a visit to the Spearfish Canyon waterfalls. They have some really nice walking trails with some fantastic scenery.
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Old 06-02-2017, 02:32 PM   #4
dodgefather21
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Wow looks like I'll have plenty to do. I will definitely refer back to this post and look these ideas up . We are taking the kidos so that's great to hear, that the koa will keep them busy . We've come to find out there is so much to do we haven't even gone and are planning another trip this year or possible next . Thank you both .


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Old 06-21-2017, 05:24 PM   #5
dodgefather21
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Palmers Gulch KOA

Just got back today and are planning our next trip . This KOA is amazing . Friendly staff and so much to do . We didn't even scratch the surface in South Dakota .


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Old 06-21-2017, 05:28 PM   #6
dodgefather21
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Horses riding , mini. Golf , bikes , ATV rentals, pools , good food , movie theater , rock wall , jumping pillow . If you have kids this is the place to go .


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Old 09-18-2017, 06:03 PM   #7
mlk1950
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Hello everyone. New here to the forum, but love the Black Hills. My wife and are are planning a vacation there this summer. As said, Deerfield Lake is beautiful, as is Sylvan Lake. When at Sylvan Lake, you might want to hike the trail up to Harney Peak which is a lot of beautiful scenery. It's about a 3 hour hike, but well worth it.
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Old 09-19-2017, 04:49 PM   #8
gkainz
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and before you visit Sylvan Lake, watch "National Treasure 2" ... and then try to find the cave!
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