Air Tours

Most people prefer to see the Badlands from an earthbound perspective, but one ballooning outfitter provides visitors with an airborne perspective of the park.

Outfitter & Expeditions

Black Hills Balloons. Based in Custer, Black Hills Balloons provides amazing bird's-eye views of some of the Black Hills' most picturesque locations. Reservations are essential. 25173 Lower French Creek Rd., Custer, South Dakota, 57730. 605/673–2520; From $295.


Bicycles are permitted only on designated roads, which may be paved or unpaved. They are prohibited from closed roads, trails, and the backcountry. Flat-resistant tires are recommended.


Two Wheeler Dealer Cycle and Fitness. Family-owned and -operated Two Wheeler Dealer Cycle and Fitness, based in Spearfish, stocks more than 1,000 new bikes for sale or rent. The service is exceptional. Get trail and route information for Badlands National Park and the Black Hills at the counter. 305 Main St., Spearfish, South Dakota, 57783. 605/642–7545;



South Dakota Game, Fish and Parks. 523 E. Capitol Ave., Pierre, South Dakota, 57501. 605/773–3485;

Horseback Riding

The park has one of the largest and most beautiful territories in the state in which to ride a horse. Riding is allowed in most of the park except for some marked trails, roads, and developed areas. The mixed-grass prairie of the Badlands Wilderness Area is especially popular with riders. However, note that the weather in the Badlands Wilderness Area can be very unpredictable. Only experienced riders or people accompanied by experienced riders should venture far from more developed areas.

There are several restrictions and regulations that you must be aware of if you plan to ride your own horse. Potable water for visitors and animals is a rarity. Riders must bring enough water for themselves and their stock. Only certified weed-free hay is approved in the park. Horses are not allowed to run free within the borders of the park. It's essential that all visitors with horses contact park officials for other restrictions that may apply.