The Badlands of South Dakota make for some epic road tripping. From iconic road trip stops like Mount Rushmore to the rugged beauty of the region's many parks (including one seriously underrated National Park), there's tons to see and do here. Set up camp at South Dakota's Horse Thief Campground and Resort and get ready to explore!
Mount Rushmore and road trips pretty much go hand-in-hand— the American icon has been a stop-off for vacationing families since it was completed in 1941. Located in South Dakota’s gorgeous Badlands, it’s prime road trip country… and if you’re traveling in an RV, you’ll probably need a place to pull off for the night.
Thankfully, the closest RV park to Mount Rushmore is the awesome Horse Thief Campground and Resort. Located in the Black Hills National Forest and only 12 short miles away from the imposing glory of Mount Rushmore, this campground is exceptional. Spacious sites that come with fire rings and picnic tables, a heated pool, laundry and squeaky-clean bath house facilities, and Wi-Fi access take this site above and beyond most RV camping spots.
Then there’s the location. It’s bordered by the lovely Custer State Park, which features 71,000 acres of pure Black Hills beauty. Search for bison, burros, and prairie dogs, hike Harney Peak and take in the view, or just cruise one of the park’s scenic drives and appreciate its wild beauty.
One of America’s most underrated National Parks is right nearby as well: Wind Cave National Park. The massive underground complex features tons of different tour options, ranging from short and sweet to strenuous candlelight adventures that should appeal to anyone and everyone. It’s the densest cave system in the world, with the most explorable passages per cubic mile, and features all kinds of stone and ice formations!
And if you still have time before heading back to Horsethief Lake, stop by the monumental Crazy Horse Mountain Memorial. This controversial carving will be the world’s largest statue…if it’s ever completed. Meant to be even more massive than the heads of Mount Rushmore, it’s been in the works since 1939… and they’re far from complete, although you can still check out the masterpiece-in-progress.
And once you’ve gotten a taste of all the roadside awesomeness offered by the Badlands, head back to camp and cozy up by the campfire— the perfect way to end a day of adventure.