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Aurora, SOUTH DAKOTA

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Most Recent Aurora Camping Reviews
Ok place to spend the night, but could have been better

I spent the night here and had to pay the entrance fee to the park as well as the camping fee for my tentsite. They had only a few tentsites available amid all the RV sites, but they were right on the edge of the playground, so the families had to walk right through my campsite to get to the play area. Not too big a deal as no one wanted to use the play area at night while I was sleeping, but still.  I also looked over at the power lines. There was a flush toilet facility close by but there was a very bright light on all night. Good for families needing to navigate in the dark but not wonderful if you like sleeping in darkness. And though I was told that quiet hours began at 10PM, the site next to me was quite loud through the trees until at least midnight so the quiet hours are not enforced. Meh. I don't think I'll be going back.

Gorgeous

I love this park for both it's camping and hiking. Stunning quartzite formations make for some great climbing. It's a really small park which is both good and bad. The trails aren't very long, but it's not usually overcrowded.

Nice bathroom, nice hiking trails.

We stayed in the lower campground. It is very opened. The campsites are medium size and close together. The bathroom was well taken care of. There are train tracks really close to the campground. The trains didn't seem long nor did they blow the horns. The swimming area looked nice, but it was too cold to use.

Nice campground on the prairie

There are two campgrounds in this park - the upper one is on the prairie while the lower one is lower in elevation along the river. We stayed in the lower campground in site 30. The lower campground is close to the playground and swimming pond but it rained the whole time we camped so we didn't use either.

Sites in the lower campground are fairly close together and we didn't have cell service (Verizon), which wasn't a big deal.

I brought my fat bike and bike the Bluebird and Dakota Valley trails. Both are mowed paths that go through prairie and wooded areas. The actual mountain bike trail was disappointing, it was overgrown, narrow, and hugged a high ridge.

Our site, 30, sloped away from the parking pad. You wouldn't be able to set up.chairs under your awning at this site and the picnic table sat in a low spot that got muddy after 2 straight days of rain. There is a river that runs behind the sites in this loop. Our boys played on the rocks and had a great time.

There are nearby train tracks and trains ran by several times a day, though luckily they don't blow the horn so we didn't notice them much.

Best Sunset on the Prairie

I’ll admit - I chose this campground because I am a HUGE Laura Ingalls Wilder nerd and it is on one of the lakes where she and Almanzo took their Sunday drives and just a few miles from the LIW Memorial Society in DeSmet. Apart from all that, this is a gem of a campground. We were fortunate to get a site right on Lake Thompson. There are clean and modern restrooms available with free showers. A hiking/biking trail goes along the lake, through the campground and to the swimming beach. Friendly staff - great facilities.

A place for the night

This is a drive through and stay the night kind of campground. Road noise isn’t to bad with the interstate next door. Has a pool and mini golf course for the kids.

Quiet and peaceful

Quiet campground. Nice hiking along the rock formations. Good stop along the way if traveling west or east.

Family friendly

Great campground with a lot to do. Nice beach and walking trails and outdoor excessive area. Nice fishing dock.

This place was nice

I enjoyed my stay here--except for my neighbors. It was beautiful, filled with trees, along a river, great bathrooms and private showers. Very clean and well maintained. I just stayed one night in my van in an electric site, but they also have tent sites with no hookups. I would recommend this place.

A Fine Park

Stayed for 3 nights. Very shady, but does not have sewer or water hookup. 30 amp electric service. Grounds are well maintained and the restroom and shower facilities are very up to date but heavily used. Sites are closer than I like. Park has nice trails and bluffs. Bison are within the park but did not see. Rangers and staff very friendly. Would be great for overnighter. The most irritating thing about the park were the next door neighbors who let their five dogs use our campsite as an area for deification. People with pets need to be respectful of others. I have come to the conclusion that all pets should be banned from public lands.

Nice stay in a state park

We passed through Palisades State Park earlier this year and spent some time in the day-use area so we knew it was a good place to camp as we passed through South Dakota on another trip. One main (clean) bathhouse with two showers plus two pit toilets for those camping farther away on the loop. A mix of cabins, tent, and electric sites. Lots of trees. LONG driveways and some sites (such as 34E) are very large. The website allows you to view sites, so you know in advance what to expect. Nice walking trails and picnic areas.

Quiet little oasis in the middle of the Minnesota prairie

This was a drive-by site for us and not a destination, so our review is based on only one night. We found the park to be very quiet and only had a few camping neighbors during our stay. It seems like it might be a destination for retired RVers, as everyone seemed to know each other well, which was fun. 

Highlights include nice, easy trails through the prairie, lots of wildflowers, and a herd of bison. We only saw the bison from a distance, but apparently, there are tours. We experienced lots of bugs in early July - biting flies and mosquitoes, and there was a constant humming noise from a nearby farm that really detracted from our experience. 

Otherwise, the campground was really peaceful and the bathhouse was clean. We arrived around 4:30 pm and the office was closed. We didn't see a single park employee or campground host during our visit. 

We checked out the tipis, which looked really fun, but with all the flies, we opted for setting up our tents to keep them out. We'd totally stay here again, but we probably wouldn't go out of the way to visit.

Tipi on the prairie

Amazing remnant of Minnesota prairie set among the farm country. With the prairie in Minnesota gone except for a handful of small conservation areas, Blue Mounds State Park is an oasis of prairie in a sea of corn and soybean. Bison roam a small area of a few hundred acres where prairie smoke and other native plants make a last stand in a landscape of Sioux quartzite rock outcroppings, cliffs, streams, rivers and waterfalls. Hike the park or drive over to touch the Sky prairie, there’s plenty to do. The campsites are high and dry with some set overlooking mound creek or nestled amongst the shade trees. In cooler months the park has a stone shelter with a wood burning stove to escape the rain or chill. There are three spacious tipis for rent. $30-35 a night that can sleep 4-6 people. Those sites are set to the side and offer some privacy.

Beautiful and peaceful

Heading home needed a one night camp spot. This one fit the bill.
Located in Brandon not far from Sioux Falls. Clean bathrooms with showers. Firewood available to purchase. Each site has a picnic table and fire ring. Bike and hiking trails. Plus plenty of privacy. Definitely will return.

Fun experience for the kids

The pool and activities at this campground make it great for kids. At the time of our visit I-90 was being rebuilt nearby so access from the interstate was more difficult, but this isn’t the fault of the campground. Some sites seem a little right but we had one in the end which was very close to the bathroom and pool.

Awesome place

The place is beautiful. A lot of trails to go on. Lots of sun so bring your sunscreen.

A very nice getaway!

We camped here over the weekend with our dogs. The campground is within 10 miles off of I90.

The park is not very big so there are not many campsites. Some have electric hook up, others are just for tent camping. All of them provide a picnic table and a fire pit. They also have little log cabins. We stayed at campsite 6 which was a very good spot. Some of the other sites seemed very close together without much privacy or shade.

The park staff (rangers, camp host and volunteers) was extremely friendly. They always made sure that we had everything we needed. The rangers also offer different programs on the weekend like learning about geocaching or how to make campfire desserts.

There is one bathhouse for the entire campground. It seemed a little old but got cleaned daily. There are also several vault toilets around the area. From the campground you have access to the water. There are also several short hiking trails from where you can see the rock formations.

It was just a very short ride to the Devils Gulch (Jesse James historical site) or Split Rock Park. There is also a Dollar General close by. We would definitely recommend the campground.

Laura would be honored

We have traveled in a RV for 6 years and been to 48 states (3 or 4 times each), visited 300 plus small towns and I can say this was one of my favorite camp spots. There are only 4 RV lots, and they are pretty close together, but we stayed before season, so we had the place practically to ourselves. For $30, we had W&E, fire pit (firewood not sold), picnic table and free access to the homestead. Bathrooms were so clean and smelled like cedar wood.  There is a dump station but be fore warned it's on a slope, so emptying your tanks completely will be a challenge. Also a sign says grey water only, this is not true, you can dump your black water too. Since we were off season, during the day, they had school trips daily, so there were a lot of children, having fun playing right behind our rig. But it was only for a short period of time during the afternoon. There's a museum right next to the sites, which is always open. There's also is a tower you can climb to get some really great views. Several houses and buildings are on the property you can explore and hay rides are available. They also have a nice country store where you can by your souvenirs. If your a Laura Ingalls Wilder fan, like me, this is a must stop, if only for a night! I also want to mention that the camp hosts and gal that ran the store, couldn't have been nicer.

Nice park

Nice and quit park with big campsite. Nice clean bathrooms. Camp hosts have firewood and ice also super friendly.

Small State Park in Farmland

We stayed here for one night on the way to the Black Hills in South Dakota. The campground is in the far south western corner of Minnesota about 30 minutes for Sioux Falls South Dakota. The site is in the middle of grasslands and cornfields. They have very organized park staff that have an efficient check in process. The campground has some nice ponds and bike routes. It’s located next to a bison range and tours are available. Unfortunately the camp sites are packed in on top of each other with no privacy. You have a lot of local large RV users using loud generators and playing music until after midnight. They have good facilities with showers and dump stations. During our stay, the water in the camp tested positive for bacteria and the camp was giving out free drinking water. Since you don’t have many options in the area, this may be a good choice. The overcrowding was our main issue.

Good travel stop

We stayed on our way from IL to Black Hills SD. Super easy access as well as easy pull through. Level enough to not unhook. Nice play area and pool. Also a neat little micro brewery walking distance, across the road. Very nice staff and an RV dealer next door. Very close to I-90 and it’s noise, but that comes with the easy access.

Clean and convenient

Visiting family in Sioux Falls. The campground facilities (bathrooms, showers) were very clean as was their small general store. Mini golf course could use some work. Right on I90 so road noise is an issue. The managers were extremely friendly and accommodating.

Great area

Beautiful stone pillars. Great area to camp in.

Very Cool and Unique Campsite on the Grounds of the Laura Ingalls Homestead

A very cool and unique campsite on the grounds of the Laura Ingalls Homestead near De Smet, SD. Unique in that you can camp right on the open prairie and for only $10 a night. Just pick a spot of grass and you’re good to go. There are some picnic tables you can choose to be near or just head out on the frontier. There are also options to camp in a covered wagon as well as a bunkhouse. RV spots are available and include water and electric hookups. Well appointed and clean bathrooms (electricity and flush toilets) are on site with showers.

The other really cool thing about this spot—especially for families—are all of the fun activities at the homestead itself. There’s a one-room school house with tours, a barn with animals, a covered wagon ride where you (or your kids) can lead the horse-drawn wagon, opportunities to learn how to make a jump rope, twist hay, wash clothes—all things the Ingalls family had to do on a farm from long ago.

A night or two in the summer is great though with no shade for the campsites field, it can get warm but evenings on the prairie are gorgeous. All in all, a great spot to set up that is cheap but with nice facilities and staff.

Cart- in Camping with Lake Superior Views

Loved the whole area around Split Rock Creek State Park. The campground was clean with good facilities and I loved the organized cart in operation! We chose site 5 for it's view of Lake Superior!

Each site had a fire pit, bear locker and picnic table, and sites are reservable in advance (see photos for instructions).

There's lots of hikes around the state park -- the most notable being those that let you catch a view of Split Rock Lighthouse. Worth the visit.

Nice quiet park

Despite being close to Brookings this park is quiet and i didnt find it very full. Nice place to go camping, especially if you are looking to go birding for waterfowl or fishing one of the nearby lakes.

Very family oriented

This campground is geared to families with children. They looked like they were having a great time with lots of activities during our overnight stay. It was trick or treat weekend so the park was overflowing. Sites were close without concrete or asphat pads although they are relatively level. If we had known it was trick or treat weekend we would have picked a different park just to avoid congestion. Roads in park were rough with puddles.

Fun weekend!

we had a great weekend at this park! Great hiking trails and water activities!

Small park with great campsites and trails

Bison. Wildflowers. An old quarry.

And that’s about it.

Beautiful park with nice trails… you can hike them all in an afternoon if you’d like.

Highly recommended for a night or two.

Something for everyone!

This state park in eastern SD is a great t place to camp, there are two modern camping areas, a swimming beach several boat launches, handicap accessible fishing dock. There is a a horse trail and trail campsites.