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South Dakota State Railroad Museum, Hill City

4.6
#13 of 19 in Things to do in Hill City
History Museum Museum
South Dakota State Railroad Museum is located in Hill City. Plan to visit South Dakota State Railroad Museum and other customer-reviewed, writer-recommended Hill City attractions using our Hill City itinerary builder.
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Reviews
TripAdvisor Traveler Rating
38 reviews
Google
3.2
TripAdvisor
  • ride the train and lay over in keystone and go to the red garter, great wall of guns fun to look at, and the food is good too. the barb-e-q around the corner at keystone is very good too, hope to retu...  more »
  • Grandson loved this little museum. We went in after our train ride. They have a train car & other historical items along with written history. My favorite was looking at the food menus & dishes from t...  more »
  • The grandkids loved it. I was surprised when they spent the majority of their time typing on the old typewriters in the mock RR station office.  more »
Google
  • Small.. lots of stuff to sort through.
  • Waste of money. Our kids LOVE trains, so we figured we could do no wrong by going out of our way on our vacation to stop here. First off, the cost to ride the "historic" train is unreal. Absolutely astronomical. We couldn't afford that, but figured that the train museum might have, you know, trains. We paid $5 per adult to get in and found it to be one small room filled with old railroad items, most of which weren't even labeled. It looked like an episode of "American Pickers" gone bad. There was a model train set which would have been pretty cool if the curator had allowed my kids to even look at it. Every time my kids got close enough to even look at it, the curator told them to back away. They lost interest quickly. If you're into paying $5 to see what a set of dishes looked like on the Great Northern Railroad, then this place is perfect for you. If you want to see actual trains, don't waste your time or your money. Basically, we ended up paying $10 to watch our kids play with the off-brand wooden train tracks tucked away in a corner for 10 minutes. Waste of time and money.
  • To C. Whip (2013 guest) - I am disappointed and sorry that you did not find your experience at the Museum to be satisfactory. I am not sure who the person you refer to "curator" was on the day of your visit, but I can only speculate that if it was me (Director) on docent duty that day, I asked the children to step back if they were actually touching or interfering with the operation of the model trains, a relatively new exhibit at the time. Signs posted around the layout ask parents or guardians to keep the children back at a safe distance. A clear Lexan barrier now surrounds the model train displays. Your other comments about interpretation are somewhat vague; possibly your concerns regarding your kids enjoyment eclipsed your understanding of the Museum and its mission. As we are not part of the steam-powered excursion railroad next to our facility, I cannot speak to the rates charged for the train ride. I can say from personal visits to other excursion rail lines around the Nation, that the prices for an over two-hour rail trip through the Black Hills are fair with other shorter trips offered nationally. Once again you may have misunderstood the distance and scope of the train's trip. I am sorry that the experience was not what you expected; if you would have asked at the conclusion of your visit a refund would have been given by any member of my staff. I hope that you reconsider your opinion, and visit us again on your next trip to the Black Hills region. Rick Mills Museum Director

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