This RVers guide to Mount Rushmore camping is brought to you by our friends at Matador, whose selection of packable products, including their versatile and waterproof wet bag, is the perfect product for your next RV adventure.
Aside from being one of the most recognizable landmarks in the United States, Mt. Rushmore boasts a world of its own when it comes to camping near the national monument. It’s one of the most RV-friendly places to visit in the United States.
Go RVing at These 15 Mount Rushmore Camping Destinations
Whether you take it easy at one of the many KOA’s surrounding the Black Hills region or roam the woods near Horsethief Lake, there are plenty of options for RVers looking for Mount Rushmore camping. Add these destinations around Mount Rushmore to your road trip itinerary, and you might find yourself staying awhile.
Convenient not only to Mount Rushmore, but also Wind Cave National Park, Custer State Park, and Thunder Basin National Grassland, it’s hard to beat the location of Plenty Star Ranch. Hosts Jack and Isa Kirk have opened up the land surrounding their private home in the Black Hills to not only RV guests looking for full hookups, but also tent campers and guests who can cozy up in the Plenty Star log cabin. Amenities include flush toilets, an outdoor shower compatible with your RV solar shower, and clean drinking water.
There’s even a bit of a bed and breakfast vibe with morning coffee and tea on the Kirks’ front porch. Best of all, you’re smack dab in the middle of Black Hills National Forest, so access to the outdoors has never been easier. And with rates starting at $12 a night, you can save your pennies for other activities, like the Mount Rushmore audio tour or a cold cone based on Thomas Jefferson’s own ice cream recipe.
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A campground perfect for those seeking something once removed from KOA-style campgrounds, Horsethief Lake campground, named after the nearby lake, provides a relatively secluded place to take in the sharp sites of the Black Hills wilderness. The campground itself is less than two miles away from Mount Rushmore, but still offers easy access to a wide range of outdoor activities.
The KOA at Palmer Gulch is an all-in-one camping destination in close proximity to Mount Rushmore. The well-established KOA offers everything from a Fun Zone in the middle of the campground to a free shuttle available to escort you and your family to the base of Mount Rushmore itself. This site is perfect for families looking for a more “resort style” Mount Rushmore camping experience, with a variety of activities to keep everyone entertained.
Located just 20 minutes from Mount Rushmore National Monument, Spokane Creek campground is the happy medium between the rustic tent-only campgrounds and the high-energy resorts that pepper the Back Hills. Featuring RV sites with both full and partial hook-up options, Spokane Creek is a flexible, centrally-located resort that has the potential to fill everyone’s camping desires.
At American Buffalo Resort, you can experience the iconic scenery of the Black Hills while enjoying the park’s amenities which include hot tubs, a mini-golf course, and horseshoe pits. During the summer months, be sure to stop in for the daily pancake breakfast special, the perfect solution for families looking for an easy way to camp with convenience.
Another well-hidden, RV-friendly campground is Fort Welikit Family Campground, located a mile north of the town of Custer, and out of the way of most major highways. Along with great access to a variety of the Black Hills attractions (including Mount Rushmore), Fort Welikit offers large, spread out campsites ranging from full hookups to basic water and electric sites. In addition, the family-centered campground features large pavilions available to groups, as well as a large open space area and a playground for younger children.
Black Hills Trailside Park is nestled almost perfectly between Mount Rushmore and the Crazy Horse Memorial, about 20 minutes from each. Black Hills is a unique resort-style campground that offers much to visitors, including eight acres of open land. The campground is also in close proximity to the Mickelson Trail, a 109-mile trek that follows old rail lines through the Black Hills wilderness, and is walking distance from downtown Hill City.
When it comes to Mount Rushmore camping, this KOA is another perfect spot for those looking for close access to both the monument as well as the gorgeous Custer State Park. For RVers with pets, the Custer / Mount Rushmore / Black Hills KOA features a dog park.
9. Kemp’s Kamp
Kemp’s Kamp is one of the closest campgrounds to Mount Rushmore, located only 5-10 minutes away in the Keystone, South Dakota area. Amenities for visitors include a heated pool and multiple shower facilities. Along with standard RV sites, Kemp’s Kamp offers creekside sites that offer additional shelter and privacy from fellow campers.
Located on the shore of Pactola Reservoir, the Pactola Campground is a wonderful spot for those seeking a more secluded camping experience, while maintaining the basic amenities (toilets and a water source) common amongst most of the Mount Rushmore camping destinations. Electrical hookups are not available, but each campsite is within walking distance of the reservoir, and the nearby marina offers basic supplies and service for camping attendants.
11. Custer State Park
For a more traditional Mount Rushmore camping experience, Custer State Park, located about 20 miles south of Mount Rushmore, offers 7 campgrounds within the park that accommodate RVs, each with a different level of amenities and offerings.
- Bluebell Campground
- Center Lake (small RVs or campers only)
- Game Lodge Campground
- Legion Lake
- Stockade North
- Stockade South
- Sylvan Lake Campground (small RVs or campers only)
3 of the campgrounds, Center Lake, Legion Lake, and Sylvan Lake, are located within walking distance of the water’s edge, though every campground includes restrooms and showers. Center Lake is the only RV-friendly campground within the park that does not offer electrical hookups or drinking water in close proximity.
Slightly more remote than the Custer-based campgrounds, Oreville Campground is located near Hill City, South Dakota, and is a spaciously set group of sites that offer excellent access to Crazy Horse Monument. For a rare opportunity to hike to the top of Crazy Horse Monument, plan your arrival for the annual Crazy Horse Volksmarch.
For those seeking a Mount Rushmore camping experience that’s off the beaten path, Oreville is a great spot to find the perfect balance between the isolated and the comfortable.
13. Echo Valley Park
Echo Valley is a family-owned RV park that’s nestled just north of Custer, and in very close proximity to Crazy Horse Mountain. A little bit quieter than the larger, resort-style campgrounds in the area, Echo Valley is a superb option for travelers seeking a more “local” camping experience. The RV park features full hook-up sites, along with shower facilities and access to several great trails in the Black Hills area, including the Buck Horn Wilderness Area and Thunder Head Mountain.
This highly rated campground is an activity center with nearly every amenity available to its guests. Located in Custer, the Big Pine Campground offers both primitive sites and full 50/30 amp sites with water, electric, and sewer hookups available. With everything from a game room to a volleyball court, Big Pine is the perfect spot for Mount Rushmore camping that families with children and larger groups are sure to enjoy.
Another resort-style option in the Black Hills, Buffalo Ridge features a variety of sites to accommodate every camping style, from tipis to cabins to the more traditional RV and tent sites. Along with being full of family-friendly amenities such as volleyball and basketball courts, a general store, and a solar heated pool, Buffalo Ridge also includes its own Theater on site, where live shows and concerts are performed throughout the year.