Amazingly enough we have internet access out here in the boonies (thank you Verizon) so I’m able to complete the campground review of State Park we were in for the last part of our stay at Custer, SD.
Link to campground here: Stockade Lake North, Custer State Park
- Site Quality = 4.5/5
Overall the sites here are very nice. The majority are large, level dirt sites with electrical hook-up, fire-pit, bench and ample space between campers (there’s a few non-electric and paved pull-ins too). You can easily get the biggest rigs in here. This is a forest area and most sites have good shade.
- Facilities = 4/5
Good selection of facilities here. There’s vault toilets, flush toilets and free showers. There’s also potable water and a playground and large grassy area on-site. The only reason I gave it a ding was there was a heavy, musty odor in the women’s bathrooms while we were there which was not altogether pleasant. Also, there’s no dump station. But, overall the facilities were good for a State Park location.
- Location = 4/5
This campground is right at the beginning of Custer State Park so you have direct access to the Park, and you can walk to Stockade Lake from your site. It’s also only ~6 miles from the town of Custer. The only reason it doesn’t get a 5 is that there’s no hiking trails straight from the campground (although you can bush-whack the surrounding forest).
- Pet Friendliness = 5/5
They’re very pet friendly here and lots of space for pooch to hang out and walk in the forest.
Overall Rating = 4.4
BONUS ALERT = Custer wildlife at your doorstep
Summary: This is the first Custer State Park campground as you enter the park and is one of their larger ones set beautifully in a forested area near Stockade Lake. Overall it’s a great area. Large, level sites with electrical hook-up available, good shade and privacy between campers. There’s also a ton of activities on-site including a playground (on a large grassy area), movies about Custer SP at night and free canoeing on the lake once a week. On the negative side there’s no hiking trails right from the park, but you are within walking distance of the Lake and driving distance of everything in Custer SP. The other negative is that because it’s so popular, it’s almost always completely booked out. We talked to people who’d booked 8 months ahead for their site and we got one of the very last pull-in sites (non-electric) when we booked a month and a half ago. Overall a great campground, but beware to book way ahead if you’re coming in summer.
Extra Info: Verizon wireless worked flawlessly. AT&T phones were OK. Sites cost $18/night for non-electric, $22/night for electric. Potable water on-site, but no dump station (you can dump for $4 at Sinclair gas station in Custer) . You do want to reserve ahead of time.