Posts for 2016


Looking for haunted attractions? Here’s the Top Haunted Places in the Black Hills

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Fall is here.  The leaves are turning beautiful shades of yellow, orange, and red.  In many areas around the Black Hills, they’ve already started falling off the trees.  The nights are quieter than we’re used to.  The traffic from traveling tourists in the nights has been replaced with only the sound of a slight breeze and rustling leaves.  The pine trees, entrenched in the granite hillsides and peaks of the Black Hills, create a silhouette against the moon-lit Dakota night.  It’s easy to let your mind wander to thoughts of the area’s rich history and legends.  How many of those legends might still be roaming around? We present some of the most haunted places in the Black Hills…in no particular order.
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Tips and Tricks for Traveling with Pets

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It’s a common dilemma.  You and your family are getting ready to go on vacation.  You’ve got your hotels booked, your route planned, and your itinerary set.  There’s only one problem.  One of your family members has four legs and fur.  If you booked pet-friendly lodging in the Black Hills, like the Powder House Lodge, you have a little less to stress about.  But there’s still the question of how to deal with traveling with pets.  We’re here to give you some tips and tricks on how to make traveling with pets enjoyable for everyone.

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Sylvan Lake Offers Some of the Best Hiking in the Black Hills

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There are many beautiful places to go hiking in the Black Hills, but one of the favorites is Sylvan Lake.  One of the reasons the area is so popular is because Sylvan Lake offers more than just hiking in the Black Hills.  With a picnic area, paddle boats for rent, fishing, and rock climbing, Sylvan Lake is a location in Custer State Park where you and your family could easily spend a few hours to an entire day. 

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Don’t Miss the 51st Annual Buffalo Roundup at Custer State Park

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Every year, people from all over come to Custer State Park for the annual Buffalo Roundup.  There’s nothing quite like feeling the thunder beneath your feet as you see a massive herd of buffalo driven across the rangeland.  Cowboys and cowgirls gather to drive the herd of buffalo in a spectacular site that also functions as a critical herd management tool.  This year, the annual Buffalo Roundup in Custer State Park will take place on Friday, September 30, 2016 at 9:30 am. 

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Gold Panning: A Black Hills Attraction That’s Fun for the Whole Family

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The Black Hills is synonymous with gold.  In fact, one of the reasons the area boomed was because of the Black Hills Gold Rush.  Gold mines and gold panning are part of the rich history that the area has to offer.  Along with Wild West legends like “Wild Bill” Hickok, Potato Creek Johnny, and Calamity Jane, it’s no mystery why the myth of the Old West and the Black Hills Gold Rush is still a prominent piece of today’s culture.  Visitors from around the world are always eager to visit Black Hills attractions that are fun and delve deep into the area’s rich history.  We’ve put together a list of some of the fun gold panning and gold mining attractions around the Black Hills.

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Visit Crazy Horse Memorial During Your Black Hills Vacation

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As you drive along Highway 16 in the southern Black Hills, you’ll notice all of the features that make the area so recognizable.  Dense pine trees, rolling hills and elevation changes, and granite spires that sometimes seem like they’re pushing their way through the earth like a new tooth.  As you approach Custer, the landscape starts to change drastically and the granite hills give way to flatter prairie.  One of the final visages of the Black Hills and its towering granite structures blanketed by pine trees is a monument that has been in development for over 60 years.  Crazy Horse Memorial stands as a testament to the perseverance of our human determination while honoring a great warrior and his people.

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Sturgis Motorcycle Rally Rides Can Be a Great Charity Event

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The Sturgis Motorcycle Rally is one of the biggest events to happen every summer in the Black Hills.  It’s a fun time for us up at the Powder House because many of our guests have stayed with us year-after-year for the Sturgis Motorcycle Rally.  Having these guests return every year for their Sturgis Rally lodging is almost like seeing extended family for a week every year.  In addition to the regular rides, many of our guests actively participate in charity rides during the Sturgis Motorcycle Rally.  We’ve put together a list of rides that you can participate in during your visit to the Sturgis Motorcycle Rally.  Many of these rides are charity rides, which are a great way to have fun, explore the hills, and ride for a good cause.

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Family Attractions in the Black Hills Include Discovering Dinosaurs!

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The Black Hills and Badlands of South Dakota are known for being two vastly different landscapes.  They Black Hills is covered with lush evergreen trees and granite peaks that seem to almost touch the sky.  The Bandlands offer a stark contrast and a day driving through the desert landscape looks like a barren, almost alien world.  While there are many different family attractions in the Black Hills, there are many of our visitors and guests who are surprised to learn about South Dakota’s connection with one of history’s most fascinating animals: dinosaurs.

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Catch the Best Black Hills Fireworks Displays and Events this 4th of July with these Fireworks Shows

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The Black Hills often invokes a lot of patriotic feelings to travelers passing through.  Mount Rushmore, for instance, is also known as the Shrine of Democracy.  Downtown Rapid City has a walking presidential tour, which consists of life-sized, bronze sculptures of American Presidents.  Our very own Keystone even houses the National Presidential Wax Museum.  With the 4th of July weekend approaching faster than we might want to admit (can’t believe it’s almost July!), we thought it’d be a good idea to provide some information on the exciting Black Hills fireworks displays you can catch while you and your family are visiting the area.  Firework shows are a highlight of any 4th of July celebration and are fun for the whole family! 

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Hiking Harney Peak: One of the Most Popular Black Hills Hiking Destinations

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Every season we have a number of guests tell us about their adventures in the Black Hills.  One of the most common comments we hear is, “Well, we just had to hike Harney Peak!”  Harney Peak is one of the most popular Black Hills hiking trails, so we thought we’d give you some information about Harney Peak that you might not find on the trail.

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History of the Family Vacation: Multigenerational Vacations Current Trend

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Over the years, American travel has changed.  New modes transportation and technology trends have affected where we go, what we do, and how we share our adventures.  From innovations like the jet plane, which allowed us to travel quickly to new locations, to social media, which allows us to instantly share our experiences with friends and family, we’re taking a look at how the family vacation has changed over the years.  We see travelers from all over the world at the Powder House and, as the years go by, we see old trends fading and new ones emerging.  Here’s a little history on the family vacation as well as some of the trends we’ve noticed.

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May Marks the Beginning of the 2016 Season at the Powder House!

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It seems like just yesterday we were closing down for the 2015 season.  The weather has been getting warmer after a fairly mild winter.  We’re approaching the end of April and have been fortunate enough to have some great weather so far.   We didn’t really get a lot of snow this year, so let’s hope for some rain in the next couple weeks to keep the fire danger down and the Black Hills green.  We’re hard at work getting things ready for the 2016 season, and we’re truly excited for this season.  We’ve got some really exciting things to talk about, so let’s get to it!

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Plan Your Vacation on a Budget with These Great Black Hills Attractions

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Experiencing the Black Hills can be fun for the whole family.  The area offers so many things to do and different Black Hills attractions to experience, budgeting your time and money is important.  We’ve come up with a list of free or nearly free Black Hills attractions that will help keep your wallet fat and your schedule full while you’re lodging near Mount Rushmore.

Mount Rushmore National Monument – America’s Shrine of Democracy is a must-see Black Hills attraction and is often the thing that brings most visitors to the beautiful Black Hills.  While entrance to Mount Rushmore is free there is a $11 per car parking fee. Please keep in mind and be aware that this is a parking fee and not an admittance fee, so Park Passes will not be honored. However, this parking fee is good for the entire calendar year so you can come and go from the monument at your leisure, which is great if you plan on attending the lighting ceremony.  The lighting ceremony is a great way to end the day and is a must see while you are in the area. The ceremony takes place every evening during the summer months. For the 2016 season the ceremony will begin every night at 9:00 pm starting May 27th through August 13th.  As the days grow shorter, the ceremony will begin at 8:00 pm every night until the final ceremony of the season on September 30th.

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Enjoy the Local Wildlife when Lodging near Custer State Park

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Spring has sprung at the Powder House, and with it come green trees, bright flowers and adorable animals. From calves to cubs, the Black Hills are full of majestic native wildlife. These animal babies are a sight to see as they brave their first few months in the wild. While it’s always an adventure to see animals in their natural habitat, spotting these young ones will add a special element to your South Dakota adventure.

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Enjoy the scenic Mickelson Trail during your visit to the Black Hills

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Many visit the Black Hills to experience the breathtaking scenery that fills the area. With outdoor recreational opportunities spanning from hiking and biking, to rock climbing and kayaking, there is no shortage of activities to enjoy. While looking for lodging in the Black Hills, consider the Powder House as your home base. With modern log cabins and standard motel rooms with all the amenities, the Powder House Lodge is the perfect getaway for couples, families and large groups visiting the Black Hills.

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Planning your Black Hills Vacation

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We still have a few months left before summer, but many are getting a jump start on their summer vacation plans. If you are planning a visit to the Black Hills this year, consider the Powder House for your vacation accommodations. The Powder House is family friendly and offers lodging near Mount Rushmore as well as a peaceful slice of the Black Hills for the whole family to enjoy.

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South Dakota wineries encourage you to drink it all in

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With rolling hills, whispering pines, babbling brooks and views for miles, you’ll be tempted to take a moment and drink in all that the Black Hills has to offer. And that’s just what local wineries and breweries want you to do on your South Dakota vacation! The Powder House offers lodging near Mount Rushmore as well as many local breweries and wineries. While we feature several local wines on our menu, many of our guests enjoy touring the wineries, vineyards and of course the tasting rooms!

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Winter Recreation in the Black Hills

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For some, winter means curling up by the fireplace with a good book and a blanket for months while sipping hot cocoa and watching the snow fall. But for many in the Black Hills, winter means an opportunity to change up recreational options. Outdoor enthusiasts trade their shorts for snowsuits and water skis for downhill skis or snowmobiles.

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Fat Tire Riding in the Black Hills

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Don’t let a little snow keep you off your bike and the trails this winter! One thing we love here at the Powder House is the number of outdoor activities available to us in the Black Hills. Once thought of as a spring and summer sport, cyclists are now hitting the snow covered trails thanks to fat tire designs. Fat Bikes or Snow Bikes are popping up all over cycling communities and the Black Hills are not immune to the new craze.

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