Winter Wonderland for Kids (and Their Parents)

It’s the end of winter and we have only one conclusion: the Black Hills are magical in the winter. Moderate temperatures make it easy to get outside and enjoy the snow. Here were our favorites for winter wonderland fun for the whole family.

Skiing (or Snowboarding) at Terry Peak


Before you go: Terry Peak offers terrain for all levels from beginner to advanced. You are able to rent everything you need for a day on the slopes right at Terry Peak. If you are interested in ski school or private lessons, stop there first to get your ski lesson, lift tickets and rental equipment (the lines are typically shorter but are reserved only for those in ski school or lessons). The ski school will accept reservations in advance except on holiday weekends.  You must be able to check-in at least one hour in advance of your scheduled lesson. Terry Peak offers a discounted pass starting at noon.

What the Locals Know: If you are going to go to the mountain more than six days, get a season pass before October 31st to save a lot of money. Terry Peak accepts coolers so it’s easy to pack a lunch.  You can either leave it in the car or rent a locker.

The main lodge is called Stewart Lodge.  The ski school is located right next to Stewart Lodge. There is a second lodge called: Nevada Gulch Lodge. It usually has live music!  You can buy lift tickets here too, but only if you’re comfortable with Blue runs.

After a hard day of skiing, grab a burger and a beer at Lewie’s. A local’s tradition!

Photo credit:

Snowshoeing at Eagle Cliff


Before you go: Eagle Cliff offers beautiful groomed trails cross country skiers. Those on snowshoes are allowed to follow the trail but must stay off of the groomed areas. We recommend starting at the Bratwurst Trailhead.  There are trail maps at each Trailhead so you can choose your own adventure.

To get to the Bratwurst Trailhead, you will head south out of Lead on US Hwy 85. You will see the trailhead in 15 miles.  If you are in Spearfish Canyon, turn right at Cheyenne Crossing and the trailhead will be 7.2 miles.

You can rent snowshoes at Edge Sports in Lead, SD.

What the Local’s know: After snowshoeing, stop by Cheyenne Crossing for a slice of pie and Indian Tacos (we are totally comfortable with it being in that order too).

Photo credit:



Before you go: The Black Hills offer expansive trails for snowmobiling. The tails are groomed from December 15th to March 31st. The Black Hills are listed as one of the top 10 places to snowmobile. Trail maps and daily conditions are available here, or by calling 800.445.3474.  If you are bringing your own snowmobile, make certain it is licensed, or if it is unlicensed that you have the proper permit.

There are a lot of companies who will happily outfit you with everything you need for a day of snowmobiling including licenses/permits.

Black Hills Off Road Adventures
Spearfish Canyon Lodge
Mad Mountain Adventures

What the Local’s Know: Please use caution, and always wear helmets. We recommend that you go only during the daytime. This is a great article on snowmobiling safety with kids.

Photo credit:

Roughlock Falls


Before you go:  While it’s hard to believe it is possible, Roughlock Falls is more beautiful in the winter. This is an easy hike so everyone in the family should be able to join. It gets enough traffic that the snow gets packed down making it relatively easy to navigate, even without snowshoes. If it gets cold enough, the falls will freeze. Enchanting!

What the Local’s Know: Continue to Spearfish to grab a slice at Dough Trader Pizza Company and ice cream (yes, we even eat ice cream in the winter) at Leone’s Creamery.

Photo credit:

Summer Favorites


Some summer favorites are also available during the winter like Jewel CaveSanford Lab Homestake Visitor Center, and Watiki.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s