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Northern Hills Tour
From Rapid City, travel west on Interstate 90 to Sturgis. Pass through beautiful Piedmont Valley. Several crystal caves decorate the area, and the valley is home to the Black Hills' only petrified forest. You'll also pass the "Arlington of the West," Black Hills National Cemetery.
Take a side trip a few miles north on Highway 79 and see the natural wonder of Bear Butte State Park. Bear Butte is a landmark that holds spiritual significance for the Lakota people. Many portions of the butte are open to hikers. Near Bear Butte, stop by the Fort Meade Museum and Old Post Cemetery.
Leave Sturgis, the town famous for its annual motorcycle rally, and travel on Boulder Canyon Road (US Highway 14A) to the old mining communities of Lead and Deadwood. Stop at Deadwood's Mount Moriah Cemetery, where Western legends Wild Bill Hickok and Calamity Jane are buried. In Deadwood, more than 80 gaming halls with slots, blackjack and poker, line Main Street. Visit the Black Hills Mining Museum in Lead or a presidential sculpture park near Lead.
When you depart the area, travel the Spearfish Canyon State and National Forest Scenic Byway. Beautiful waterfalls and colorful rock formations decorate this 20-mile drive. Follow the canyon road to Spearfish to experience this cultural and recreational community. Stay overnight in Spearfish or Rapid City.