MICKELSON PARK PASS
DAILY: $4 (required per person age 12 and over)
ANNUAL: $15 (required per person age 12 and over)
**TRAIL PASSES ship FREE--fill out the 'SHIP TO' section below with name & address to send to & select 'GIFT CARD / TRAIL PASS / LICENSE PURCHASE' under the shipping options at checkout. Please allow 7-10 days to receive your pass by mail**
The George S. Mickelson Trail was completed in September of 1998. Its gentle slopes and easy access allow people of all ages and abilities to enjoy the beauty of the Black Hills. There are more than 100 converted railroad bridges and four hard rock tunnels along the 109 mile route.
Much of the trail passes through National Forest land, but there are stretches that pass through private property, where trail use is restricted to the trail only. It is vital to the future of the trail that users respect the land and others on the trail.
The Mickelson Trail is open year-round, from dawn to dusk
Length of Trail: 109 miles from Deadwood to Edgemont
15 trailheads • 100+ bridges • 35 interpretive signs
Trail surface: Packed gravel
Rated: Easy to moderate
Trail Information: The Mickelson Trail was originally the Burlington Northern line that carried trains from Edgemont to the northern Black Hills and the gold mines of the Deadwood area. The trail transverses the beautiful Black Hills of South Dakota. The original track was built in in 9 months and 22 days, and was abandoned in 1983. A group of outdoor enthusiasts recognized the trail's potential, and with support of Governor George Mickelson, it became the state's first rails to trails project.
Trail History: The first 6 miles of trail were dedicated in 1991. After years of hard work, and collaboration between the US Forest Service, South Dakota Game, Fish and Parks Department, the National Guard, the South Dakota Department of Transportation, the South Dakota Department of Corrections, and the local Friends of the Mickelson Trail, the trail was completed in 1998.
The surface is primarily crushed limestone and gravel. There are currently 15 trailheads which all offer parking, self-sale trail pass stations ($4 daily or $15 annual), vault toilets, and tables. The grades of the trail do not exceed 4 percent for the most part, but parts of the trail are considered strenuous. Traveling from Deadwood (4550 feet) in the southern direction toward Edgemont (3400 feet), the trail loses approximately 1150 feet in overall elevation.