Trip Planner:   USA  /  South Dakota  /  Custer  /  Nature  /  Sylvan Lake

Sylvan Lake, Custer

(4.8/5 based on 1,100+ reviews on the web)
Known as the crown jewel of Custer State Park, Sylvan Lake offers views of the Black Hills that showcase the sweeping pine forest as a backdrop for dramatic rocky outcroppings along the lakeshore. Created in 1881 when Theodore Reder built a dam across Sunday Gulch, the lake offers swimming, paddle boating, fishing, and picnicking, along with access to rock climbing and hiking trails. The lake sits at the base of Harney Peak, the highest point east of the Rocky Mountains; you can use it as a starting point for excursions to the peak and the park's drive along The Needles highway. Film fans may recognize the site, which was featured in the 2007 movie "National Treasure: Book of Secrets." To visit Sylvan Lake on your trip to Custer, use our Custer tour planner.
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6 days in Rapid City & Custer BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES May, culture, relaxing, romantic, historic sites, museums, shopping, popular & hidden gems PREFERENCES: May, culture, relaxing, romantic, historic sites, museums, shopping ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular & hidden gems PACE: Medium 60 days in United States BY A USER FROM AUSTRALIA October, hidden gems PREFERENCES: October ATTRACTION STYLE: Hidden gems PACE: Medium 25 days in United States BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES June, culture, relaxing, historic sites, museums, popular PREFERENCES: June, culture, relaxing, historic sites, museums ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 8 days in South Dakota BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES June, culture, historic sites, popular PREFERENCES: June, culture, historic sites ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 11 days in South Dakota BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES May, popular PREFERENCES: May ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 29 days in United States BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES September, outdoors, relaxing, historic sites, museums, hidden gems PREFERENCES: September, outdoors, relaxing, historic sites, museums ATTRACTION STYLE: Hidden gems PACE: Medium 46 days in South Dakota BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES July, outdoors, relaxing, historic sites, museums, shopping, popular PREFERENCES: July, outdoors, relaxing, historic sites, museums, shopping ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 33 days in United States BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES June, outdoors, historic sites, popular & hidden gems PREFERENCES: June, outdoors, historic sites ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular & hidden gems PACE: Medium 29 days in Midwest BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES July, popular & hidden gems PREFERENCES: July ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular & hidden gems PACE: Medium 29 days in Midwest BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES July, popular & hidden gems PREFERENCES: July ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular & hidden gems PACE: Medium 24 days in United States BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES August, popular & hidden gems PREFERENCES: August ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular & hidden gems PACE: Medium 7 days in South Dakota BY A USER FROM CANADA May, outdoors, historic sites, museums, shopping, popular & hidden gems PREFERENCES: May, outdoors, historic sites, museums, shopping ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular & hidden gems PACE: Medium
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Reviews
TripAdvisor
  • I just stopped by to snap a few photos, so I can't vouch for the lodge or campgrounds, but the views alone were well worth the visit. I'll definitely be coming back to South Dakota, and when I do, I'l...  more »
  • We rented a cottage for two weeks which was a block away from the lake near to the gas station. I admit we had to check the place before booking , but we trusted the manager Mandy Fullerton that every...  more »
  • We drove around this during our trip to the park and we took a helicopter ride over it as well. What a beautiful peaceful spot. You can see the stone spires around it from a few different drives on th...  more »