Any problems getting campsites or places to stay? -
Chris T. from Kansas City on 04/20/2019 01:40 PM
We are planning to ride the trail one way in June with camping gear. Do we need to make campsite (or other accomadations) reservations ahead of time or are we likely to be able to get campsites? It is nice to leave it open unless we are likely to have trouble finding a place to stay.
John from Wood dale il on 10/17/2018 10:00 PM
I just wanted to mention that my wife and I rode from DuPont to hill city today and trail is soggy in many parts. Had to go over snow and ice many times. Probably should wait until Saturday or Sunday before riding.
Carl MacKay from Choctaw, OK on 08/12/2018 06:06 PM
What is the elevation gain for the ride? Is it extremely hilly?
Bcov on 08/12/2018 08:17 PM
Total elevation north to south is about 4,500 feet. I would assume that the south to north route would be about 5,500 feet. Not hilly, as much as long 3-6 mile uphill sections followed by equally long down hill sections.
Ray (webmaster) on 08/13/2018 08:37 AM
Here is a web page with an elevation chart: https://www.mapmyride.com/us/hot-springs-sd/mickelson-trail-route-43717916
Jeff from Fort Worth on 09/19/2018 05:20 PM
The grade on the Mickelson is very reasonable, never over 5%. The climbs can be long and monotonous on a hot day, but a cyclist in only fair shape can handle them. I saw people very out of shape on all parts of the trail, every day, with little issue.
Ray (webmaster) on 09/22/2018 10:28 AM
Here's an elevation chart of the Mickelson Trail that I put together: elevation.aspx
Sometimes a picture is worth a thousand words. :-)
How late is too late? -
K Wombat from Northern Colorado on 08/19/2018 01:35 PM
We are considering riding the trail in mid-October and would welcome any comments about typical weather, trail conditions, color, and water availability at that time. Thanks!
baconboy from Bismarck, ND on 09/10/2018 07:19 PM
We have the exact same questions! A few families with many small children (2-9 yrs old) are planning to come down from ND mid-late Oct for a couple days of kid friendly (downhill) rides. Are we crazy for planning so late in the season?
We were planning to self shuttle a couple North sections unless the time of year warrants a different approach.
Tire size -
Ovsa on 06/04/2018 06:47 AM
Plan on cycling the trail with the 38mm Trigger Sport tires that came with my hybrid.
Will these be suitable for the trail or should I look at getting something wider? Thanks
Rod Woten from Stuart,IA on 06/08/2018 11:31 AM
Those should be perfect! I run the Schwalbe G-One 4omm's which are very similar.
Anonymous on 06/10/2018 09:27 PM
Sharing a shuttle -
Ovsa on 06/04/2018 06:51 AM
Looking for someone to share a shuttle with from Edgemont to Hill City on Thursday, June 14 in the AM.
SueB from Potland, OR on 05/09/2018 02:35 PM
4 or 5 of us are looking for lodging and ideally food, between Deadwood and Hill City as we were going to carry our gear and didn't want to do a 48 mile first day. Our literature said that Rockford would be an option, but in fact the only lodging I can find for Rockford is Carsten Cabins which I believe is at Lead. Is there any other lodging at Rockford? Anyone got a porch we could sleep on?
BCov from Salt Lake City on 05/10/2018 04:54 PM
From the research I have done, the Carstens Cottages are near Dumont which is about 15 miles out of Deadwood and about 31 miles from Hill City. My plan is to just do the 15 miles on the first day, because it is mostly uphill (1,700 elevation increase) and I am riding the trail with my family (wife and 3 kids). The second day will be the 31 miles into Hill City.
All of this information is just from my research, as we leave for the trip in a few weeks. I hope I'm not wrong!
BCov from Sandy on 06/01/2018 11:48 AM
Carstens Cottages worked out perfectly for us. The first day out of Deadwood is a long uphill ride and Carstens Cottages is about 2 miles south of the Dumont Trailhead. The cottages are well appointed with everything you could need but food. We had brought dinner with us and warmed it in the microwave. My kids really enjoyed playing frisbee in the open field and watching some of the animals that are around (horses, llamas, donkeys and a peacock).
Which Way? -
KACH from Kansas City on 02/25/2018 07:18 PM
We are hoping to do the Mickelson trail this summer. Should we go Deadwood to Edgemont and catch a shuttle back to Deadwood? OR, should we go North from Edgemont to Deadwood and shuttle back south?
Thanks for any advice!
Stillriding from Pittsburgh, PA. on 03/01/2018 12:27 PM
If you are just going to do the trail in one direction I would recommend Deadwood to Edgemont then do the shuttle back. This would get the big hills and elevation done at the beginning of your trip. I would recommend taking a look at the elevation chart also. Have a great trip.
ovsa from CALGARY on 03/21/2018 09:42 AM
what shuttle is available from Edgemont back to Deadwood? Haven't been able to find anything
Mac McPherson from Mesquite on 03/21/2018 10:42 AM
Ovsa, Heres shuttle info
Mickelson Shuttle: Deadwheels. 605-484-6592 (Stacey)
Bill on 03/21/2018 12:10 PM
This link is the only one I could find that could get you from and to any part of the trail - all from Hill City. But the downside is it states that there is a 4-person minimum.
I'm still looking for a shuttle for just one person. Good luck.
Cindy from Longmont CO on 05/21/2018 04:57 PM
Same situation here - I'll be solo, and not sure how to shuttle back...perhaps as the season develops they'll add on to an existing reservation??
KACH on 05/28/2018 03:09 PM
Cindy - As far as a shuttle service, we plan to use http://blackhillsdiscoverytours.com/mickelson-trail-bike-shuttle.html
They do groups smaller than four and they claim to do pickup from any point on the trail.
BCov from Sandy on 06/01/2018 11:44 AM
We just finished the trail on Wednesday. We rode from Deadwood to Edgemont and used Deadwheels for the shuttle for 2 of us. Stacey was great, we were running a little late on the day of our reservation and I called her that morning and I was able to push it back an hour without any issues. We used the shuttle on the front end of the trip so when we got to Edgemont we just loaded our bikes up and were able to depart immediately rather than having to time the shuttle on the last day and have people wait at the park for a few hours while I went to get the vehicle from the starting point.
We had so much fun on the trip, even my kids ages 9 & 11 had a great time and want to do it again.
ovsa on 04/26/2018 05:36 PM
any suggestions as to where a park a vehicle for a few days in Deadwood while cycling the trail?
Dont mind paying a bit as long as i know it is safe.
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Road riding. -
Ovsa from CALGARY on 04/02/2018 07:01 PM
Instead of worrying about a shuttle from Edgemont back to Deadwood, I was thinking taking the secondary roads back up through Hot Springs, Wind Cave and Mount Rushmore back to Hill City. Namely Hwys 18, 385, 87 and 16A.
Just wondering what those roads are like for cycling. Are the wide enough for cycling and is there lots of traffic that might not make it too enjoyable?
Stillriding from Pittsburgh on 04/19/2018 02:46 PM
You should go onto the satellite view on Google Map to check it out. Some roads look wide enough but remember there will be a lot of motor homes driving on some of the roads and always people in a hurry. If it was not working out for you on the road you could always call a shuttle or get back on the trail. You always see things differently going the opposite direction.
Anonymous on 04/22/2018 09:31 PM
will do, thanks
Weather in Mid June. -
ovsa from CALGARY on 03/30/2018 07:10 PM
Anybody give me an idea of what kind of weather to expect in Mid June along the trail. Plan on doing the whole thing and camping 3 or 4 nights. Hoping there is not too much rain.
Stillriding from Pittsburgh, PA. on 03/31/2018 10:56 AM
You will be looking at mid to high 70's with a day or two in the low 80's and mid 50'5 at night. Depending on which area and altitude you are riding at the time.I did the trail last June and only hit one rain shower. My video of the trail is further down the list of comments if you want to see how beautiful the trail looks. Hope this helps.
ovsa from CALGARY on 03/21/2018 09:45 AM
doesn't seen to be a lot of camping options along the trail or close by.
is there more than are listed on this interactive map?
Anonymous on 03/21/2018 02:39 PM
If your schedule permits consider the Trail Trek in early September.
Trail condition -
Billy Bob from Western Wyoming on 03/18/2018 01:17 PM
Hi. Heading to the Black Hills on March 31st and I'd like to ride some of the trail. Maybe just ride two, 20-30 mile round trip on portions of the trail over a two day period. Is the trail open? What might be the best sections to ride that aren't high gradient? Is there such a thing as typical early April weather? Any information would be helpful. Thanks
Family Ride - End of May -
bcov from Salt Lake City, UT on 02/12/2018 11:06 AM
Looking to do the trail with my family in late May (ending around Memorial Day). Thoughts on conditions of the trail at that time?
Stillriding@comcast.net from Pittsburgh on 02/12/2018 03:32 PM
Hi, I did my trip starting June 7th last year and the trail was in great shape then. Only hit rain 1 day. Hope that helps.
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does the goat head thorn live in the Black Hills? -
Allen from Ft. Collins on 01/20/2018 12:18 PM
These goat head or puncturevine has spoiled some trips on soft-surfaced trails on the Colorado front range for us. Does it grow in that part of South Dakota?