Make a Splash

Did you know there are more than 15 lakes and reservoirs in the Black Hills? From dog friendly and fishing only, locals and visitors can have their pick of which lake to visit and which lake will be best for their family! Some personal favorites include Horse Thief Lake, Sylvan Lake, Iron Creek Lake, and Pactola Reservoir. Most of the lakes and bodies of water have hiking trails around them too, so plan the ahead for a weekend packed with fun.

Here's a list for ya

From the tip of the Northern Hills to deep within Custer State Park, this list probably doesn't include all of the lakes and bodies of water in the Black Hills. These are some of the more well known or populars. Do you know of one I missed? Feel free to comment below, and I will add it!

Angostura Reservoir – This huge 4,612 acre lake is a popular Walleye fishing lake.  Numerous boat ramps and lots of camping.  Near Hot Springs SD.

Bear Butte Lake – Located in Bear Butte State Park, a small 180 acre lake.

Belle Fourche Reservoir – 8,063 acre lake created by Orman Dam.  Primary purpose if for irrigation, causing fluctuating water levels.

Bismark Lake – A 25 acres lake with a boat ramp.

Center Lake – A 25 acres lake with boat ramp, picnic area and campground.

Dalton Lake –   Located on Little Elk Creek with a campground.

Deerfield Lake – A 435 acres lake, complete with campgrounds, picnic areas and hiking trails.  This is a no-wake lake.

Featured bodies of water in the video: Coxes Lake, Horse Thief Lake, Legion Lake, Pactola Reservoir, Sheridan Lake, Stockade Lake, and Sylvan Lake

Fort Meade Reservoir – Located in the northern unit of the Fort Meade Recreation Area.

Horse Thief Lake – Near Mount Rushmore and a campground.

Iron Creek Lake – A popular, small 24 acre lake near Spearfish.  No-wake lake with shore fishing and many cabins.

Legion Lake – A 9 acres lake near Badger Hole.

Pactola Reservoir – This 785 acres lake is located in the central Black Hills.   It is filled by Rapid Creek and can be seen from US Highway 385.

Sheridan Lake – 383 acres lake located about 7 miles for Hill City.  Popular camping and fishing area.

Stockade Lake – Near the Gordon Stockade, this 130 acres lake is on the western edge of the park.

Strawberry Hill Dam – located at a roadside picnic area, stocked with Rainbow Trout.

Sylvan Lake – A very popular 19 acre lake.  Near the trailheads for Harney Peak, Little Devils Tower and Sunday Gulch.


A free magazine to help you make the most out of your Black Hills Vacation. Look for a copy at your hotel, motel & camp ground.


Located in the Black Hills of South Dakota

Available to travel upon request, additional fees may apply.

 © Finer Details Artistry 2020