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Black Hills Rock Climbing Regulations

Climbing Access is important to everyone, please adhere to land manager rules.

Access is a huge issue for all rock climbers.  In the Black Hills, we are very lucky to enjoy thousands of acres of public land.  If you are climbing or interested in route development, please do yourself and all climbers a favor by knowing the rules which dictate your actions.

Here is a short list of the regulations governing all the local climbing areas.  For more info, please stop by a local Black Hills National Forest office and ask for a map that shows the local land managers boarders as well as the brochure called “Rock Climbing in the Harney Range of the Black Hills.”  This has a nice overview of climbing in the southern Black Hills.  Spearfish Canyon and Devils Tower are not covered in it.

MOUNT RUSHMORE NATIONAL MEMORIAL: NPS

➢   Bolting and fixed anchors are allowed.
➢   The use of power drills is prohibited.
➢   Annual permits are issued for power drill use for route repair through the Black Hills Climbing Coalition.
➢   Pets are not allowed in the backcountry.
➢   Camping and open fires are not allowed.
➢   During special events portions of the climbing area are subject to closure.

CUSTER STATE PARK: CSP
➢   Bolting and fixed anchors are allowed.
➢   The use of power drills is prohibited.
➢   Annual permits are issued for power drill use for route repair through the Black Hills Climbing Coalition.
➢   Pets are allowed on leash.
➢   Camping and fires are only allowed in designated campgrounds.

BLACK HILLS NATIONAL FOREST:  USFS
➢   Dispersed camping following LNT techniques is allowed with a 14 day limit. Open fires are not allowed.
➢   Bolting and fixed anchors are allowed.
➢   There are no restrictions or permitting processes for the use of power drills, assuming the user is adhering to all other Black Hills National Forest regulations and is not in the Black Elk Wilderness or Norbeck Wildlife Preserve.
➢   No pet restrictions except in wildlife harassment.

Special Areas of Forest Service Land:
BLACK ELK WILDERNESS
➢   Fixed anchors are allowed in the Black Elk Wilderness at this time.
➢   The use or possession of power drills is prohibited.
➢   Pets are allowed on leash or under strict voice control.

NORBECK WILDLIFE PRESERVE

➢   Bolting and fixed anchors are allowed.
➢   There is a voluntary ban on the use of power drills in the Norbeck.
➢   No pet restrictions except in wildlife harassment.