7.8 Good
http://www.campgroundreviews.com/regions/south-dakota

Mount Rushmore KOA at Palmer Gulch

Hill City, South Dakota


12620 Highway 244
Hill City, South Dakota 57745
Phone: Click to view

Sites: 500
Recent Rate: $$$$

Office Hours:

Seasonal Hours: May 1st - October 1st

Monday: 7:00am - 11:00pm
Tuesday: 7:00am - 11:00pm
Wednesday: 7:00am - 11:00pm
Thursday: 7:00am - 11:00pm
Friday: 7:00am - 11:00pm
Saturday: 7:00am - 11:00pm
Sunday: 7:00am - 11:00pm

Hours above shown for Mountain Time Zone

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Latitude: 43.90030
Longitude: -103.53694

Elevation: 5011' (approx.)
Park Features
  • Pull-thru Sites Pull-thru Sites yes
  • Pets Allowed Pets Allowed yes
  • Big Rig Access Big Rig Access yes
  • Tent Camping Tent Camping yes
  • 55+ Only 55+ Only no
  • Kid Friendly Kid Friendly yes
  • Boondocking Boondocking no
  • Cabins / Cottages / Yurts Cabins / Cottages / Yurts yes
  • Dump Station Dump Station yes
  • Group Camping Group Camping yes
  • Water Spigot Water Spigot yes
Hookups
  • Full Hookup Full Hookup yes
  • Electric (30 & 50 AMP) Electric (30 & 50 AMP) Electric (30 & 50 AMP)
  • Sewer Sewer yes
  • Public Phone Public Phone no
  • Water Water yes
  • Cable/Sat. TV Hookup Cable/Sat. TV Hookup yes
Connectivity
  • WiFi WiFi no
  • ATT Cellular Provider ATT
  • Verizon Cellular Provider Verizon
  • Sprint Cellular Provider Sprint
  • T-Mobile Cellular Provider T-Mobile
Amenities
  • Restrooms Restrooms yes
  • Showers Showers yes
  • Laundry Facilities Laundry Facilities yes
  • Camp Store Camp Store yes
  • Pet Area Pet Area yes
  • Propane Available Propane Available yes
  • Cafe / Snack Bar Cafe / Snack Bar yes
  • Clubhouse Clubhouse ?
  • Firewood Available Firewood Available yes
  • Group Kitchen Group Kitchen yes
  • Horse Camp Horse Camp ?
  • Landing Strip Landing Strip no
  • Picnic Shelter Picnic Shelter yes
  • Restrooms: vault Restrooms: vault no
Recreation
  • Pool Access Pool Access yes
  • Playground Playground yes
  • Recreational Trails Recreational Trails yes
  • Rec Room Rec Room ?
  • Casino Casino no
  • Fishing Fishing yes
  • Beach Beach no
  • Biking Biking yes
  • Boating Boating no
  • Golf Golf no
  • Gym/Workout Facilities Gym/Workout Facilities no
  • Horseshoes Horseshoes no
  • Mini-Golf Mini-Golf yes
  • Outdoor Courts Outdoor Courts yes
  • Pickleball Pickleball no
  • Water Access Water Access no

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Review Details

Ratings overview

152 Reviews

These reviews are the opinion of an Campground Reviews' member and not the views of CampgroundReviews.com

Review Count: 2
States Visited: 2
Helpful Reviews: 0

Date of Stay: June, 2019 - $113.00
Overall Rating:

Family fun center, pool, under five water area, miniature golf, etc. Standard sites are close together. We camped at Mount Rushmore KOA at Palmer Gulch in a Travel Trailer.

Site Details

Site Surface
Gravel
Site Type
Pull through
Site Space
Long enough for my travel trailer and tow vehicle
Campsite Features
Patio, Picnic Table, Fire Ring
Power Hookups
30 Amp, 50 Amp
Sewer Connection
Yes

Campground Details

Space Between Lots
Spacious
Sun & Foliage
Sunny Open
Tow Vehicle Parking
Yes, Convenient
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Review Count: 12
States Visited: 10
Helpful Reviews: 1

Date of Stay: June, 2019 - $85.00
Overall Rating:

The big thing this park has going for it is the closeness to Mt. Rushmore, Keystone, Hill City and Custer State Park. Sites were level, but fairly close together and on the short side. There is a 10.00 daily resort fee added to the site cost - this would have been OK I guess if the pools had actually been open (our stay was after Memorial Day). The gift shop and store are nice and the gift shop prices are comparable to the other gift shops in the area. The staff were friendly and helpful. There's an wine bar, pizza place and ice cream shop at the front of the grounds, unfortunately the smell from the adjacent horse stable ruins the ambiance of these places. The laundry is also at the front of the campground and is both expensive (about twice the normal amount we pay) and the machines to do not clean or dry well at all. Given the cost versus the facilities drives the overall rating down for me. We camped at Mount Rushmore KOA at Palmer Gulch in a Travel Trailer.

Value
Clean Restrooms
Service
Clean Showers
Cleanliness

Site Details

Campsite
Site Surface
Gravel
Site Type
Pull through
Site Space
Just long enough for my travel trailer
Campsite Features
Fire Ring, Picnic Table
Power Hookups
20 Amp, 30 Amp, 50 Amp
Sewer Connection
Yes

Campground Details

Space Between Lots
Nearby
Sun & Foliage
Sunny Open
Tow Vehicle Parking
Yes, Not Convenient
Tips for other Campers:

There is no food or general merchandise shopping in either Hill City or Keystone, and Rapid City is an hour away each way, so stock up on groceries before going. Mount Rushmore, Crazy Horse and Custer State Park are all close by, but Badlands National Park is a good 90 minute drive one way.

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Review Count: 10
States Visited: 9
Helpful Reviews: 1

Date of Stay: June, 2019 - $113.00
Overall Rating:

No bars to make any phones but can make internet calls We camped at Mount Rushmore KOA at Palmer Gulch in a Motorhome.

Site Details

Site Surface
Concrete, Gravel
Site Type
Pull through
Site Space
Just long enough for my motorhome
Campsite Features
Fire Ring, Picnic Table, Patio
Power Hookups
30 Amp, 50 Amp
Sewer Connection
Yes

Campground Details

Space Between Lots
Nearby
Sun & Foliage
Some Shade
Tow Vehicle Parking
Yes, Convenient
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KMK

Review Count: 15
States Visited: 12
Helpful Reviews: 2

Date of Stay: September, 2018 - $78.00
Overall Rating:

Fantastic KOA Park. Best I've see by far. Be careful with the GPS for this park. Our GPS by park name sent us to a service road that RVs cannot manage. Only use the main address for the GPS to come in off of Rt 244. We camped at Mount Rushmore KOA at Palmer Gulch in a Motorhome.

Value
Clean Restrooms
Service
Clean Showers
Cleanliness

Site Details

Campsite
Site Number
126
Site Surface
Gravel
Site Type
Pull through
Site Space
Just long enough for my motorhome
Campsite Features
Fire Ring, Picnic Table
Power Hookups
50 Amp
Sewer Connection
Yes

Campground Details

Space Between Lots
Nearby
Sun & Foliage
Sunny Open
Tow Vehicle Parking
Yes, Convenient
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Featured Campgrounds Near Mount Rushmore KOA at Palmer Gulch

Review Count: 7
States Visited: 4
Helpful Reviews: 3

Date of Stay: July, 2018 - $80.00
Overall Rating:

This campground is huge and caters to families with kids. As a result the facilities - bathrooms & showers - get a lot of use and reflects that by the end of a day. Overall the facilities are well maintained and clean. Maintenance people are always around and busy taking care of things. The Kid Zone is a lot of fun for kids with many activities. We camped nearby so our grandson could come and go to the various areas - pool, jumping pillow, games area, etc. When we first arrived our site was not good. It was wet due to the area drainage so we couldn't even use the fire pit. The staff did a good job of addressing our concerns and offered us the option of moving a few spaces down on the same row which we did. We were pleased to see that, after we left the wet site, the staff came in with gravel and did a lot to make the site better for the next camper. There was no cell phone coverage at all in the campground. The campground information warns people ahead of time so it was not a surprise. If you don't have kids and want a quieter site, choose one away from the Kid Zone. However, if you do travel with kids, I recommend getting a site beside or behind Kid Zone so you can keep an eye on your children and they can go back and forth easily between your site and the fun stuff. The pancake breakfast is a pretty good deal and the food is good.

We were unhappy with the Lodge dining. We went about 7:45 pm to eat dinner and they took our name to be called later even though there were several tables completely empty. The lady taking our names said the kitchen "was slammed" with a big party so they needed to get caught up. We ended up not eating there as it seemed expensive and near closing and we were generally unhappy about the long wait. We camped at Mount Rushmore KOA at Palmer Gulch in a Travel Trailer.

Value
Clean Restrooms
Service
Clean Showers
Cleanliness

Site Details

Campsite
Site Number
Kid Zone area
Site Surface
Dirt, Sand, Grass
Site Type
Back in
Site Space
Just long enough for my travel trailer
Campsite Features
Fire Ring, Picnic Table
Power Hookups
30 Amp
Sewer Connection
Yes

Campground Details

Space Between Lots
Nearby
Sun & Foliage
Sunny Open
Tow Vehicle Parking
Yes, Convenient
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Review Count: 1
States Visited: 1
Helpful Reviews: 1

Date of Stay: July, 2018 - $75.00
Overall Rating:

We usually like KOA Campgrounds so this is a hard review to write given the friendliness of the staff. Other reviews state similar negatives including crowded, out of control kids, zero cell phone or internet service. It is very expensive and during our stay there was heavy flooding and lots of mud. Lots of mud and ruts from heavy vehicles. Spaces are very close, basically on top of each other. There are much better values in this area. When we return we won't be staying at this campground. We camped at Mount Rushmore KOA at Palmer Gulch in a Motorhome.

Value
Clean Restrooms
Service
Clean Showers
Cleanliness

Site Details

Campsite
Site Surface
Gravel, Dirt, Grass
Site Type
Pull through
Site Space
Long enough for my motorhome and a towed vehicle
Campsite Features
Fire Ring, Picnic Table
Power Hookups
50 Amp
Sewer Connection
Yes

Campground Details

Space Between Lots
Very Close
Sun & Foliage
Sunny Open
Interior Roads
Tight Turns, Poor Conditions
Tow Vehicle Parking
No
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Review Count: 3
States Visited: 3
Helpful Reviews: 1

Date of Stay: July, 2018 - $75.00
Overall Rating:

We stayed here for 1 night. The park is extremely crowded, too close to your neighbors, and overrun with kids. It was anything but relaxing. Anytime we drove in/out, it just seemed like a dangerous situation with kids running everywhere which are hard to see because it's so cramped in the park. You're in a gulch so the air seemed stagnant, there is no cell reception at all (had to drive a few miles for that). In addition, they have golf cart and ATV rentals so those are also clogging the roadway which made it even more hectic. I will NOT stay here again at all. It's just a major cluster. And the prices are waaay to high for what you get. We camped at Mount Rushmore KOA at Palmer Gulch in a Travel Trailer.

Value
Clean Restrooms
Service
Clean Showers
Cleanliness

Site Details

Site Surface
Gravel
Site Type
Pull through
Site Space
Just long enough for my travel trailer
Power Hookups
30 Amp
Sewer Connection
Yes

Campground Details

Space Between Lots
Very Close
Sun & Foliage
Sunny Open
Interior Roads
Tight Turns, Obstacles
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Review Count: 10
States Visited: 8
Helpful Reviews: 2

Date of Stay: July, 2018 - $43.00
Overall Rating:

Huge place and I did reserve late so I think I may have been in the overflow area. However, the site was tiny and hard to get into and was not only not level but had huge ruts through the middle of it that would have easily turned an ankle had I not spent 20 minutes shoveling dirt and gravel into it to make it somewhat filled. There was barely enough space to park my care in front of the space. The fire pit wasn't cleaned out and had chunks of partially burn items in it. Also, the bathrooms/showers could have been cleaner but at least the showers were hot. The laundry facilities were horrible. Half the washers didn't work and the ones that did took an hour or so to run. One of two dryers had a broken gauge so couldn't tell how to set the temp. The other one took nearly two hours to dry one small load. On the plus side, it was near all the places I wanted to see - Sylvan Lake, Needles Highway, and Crazy Horse. It also had a decent camp store and a bar/grill on site (not the best food, but decent and good beer). I'd stay here again for the locale if nothing else was available as there did seem to be sites that were a bit better, but everything was very close together. On my last day, another camper came in next to me and had problems with the power and didn't like the site and demanded to be moved. Later that day another family was there trying to set up and said that they had reserved months in advance and had a different site reserved, but received this one and was told there was no record of their original reservation. I fairly certain they were lied to about it. We camped at Mount Rushmore KOA at Palmer Gulch in a Travel Trailer.

Value
Clean Restrooms
Service
Clean Showers
Cleanliness

Site Details

Campsite
Site Number
038
Site Surface
Gravel, Dirt
Site Type
Back in
Site Space
Just long enough for my travel trailer
Campsite Features
Fire Ring, Picnic Table
Power Hookups
30 Amp
Sewer Connection
No

Campground Details

Space Between Lots
Very Close
Sun & Foliage
Some Shade
Tow Vehicle Parking
Yes, Not Convenient
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Review Count: 11
States Visited: 7
Helpful Reviews: 2

Date of Stay: July, 2018 - $80.00
Overall Rating:

The name says "gulch" and that is true--our site was mud & water. In many years of RVing this was the worst site ever had. Not cheap either! Although I had a reservation months ahead and they knew the size of our trailer, we were assigned a back-in where the gravel was very short & skinny. Tow vehicle blocked the road to unhook. A work-camper took us to the site & helped back in but he had our left tires off the gravel. I unhooked and then realized the tires were sinking in the mud. Had to hitch back up, (again blocking the road) and get left & right tires on the gravel with only inches to spare. The gravel was only about 9' wide & 18' long for my 28' trailer. The steps came down into the mud. Had to build up the rear jacks with wood blocks in the small ditch with standing water. There was nothing behind us but open area. It would be so easy to put in a small pipe in the ditch, cover it, add gravel and make this site longer. But a big company runs this KOA, at full occupancy, so looks like they have no reason to make the sites better. The site next to us had a lake under their class C the entire week we stayed. Two sites down a back hoe had to pull out a RV that was stuck in the mud. Three sites down many plywood sheets were laid down so the people could get to their steps. The streets were mud, the sites were mud, and they never drained & dried out even on sunny days. Traffic on the mud street in front of us was unbelievable. Not just RVs , ATVs, and the usual garbage trucks, but huge dump trucks the size of 18-wheelers (but with 26 wheels), with masses of little kids walking & on bikes in the mud streets. Restaurant - ate breakfast; flies & very hot in the dining room (guess that's why we were the only ones in the dining room). With zillions of kids walking around without parents, the pool gate self closer did not work. It was open all the time! But no employee could see this huge safety violation. We camped at Mount Rushmore KOA at Palmer Gulch in a Travel Trailer.

Value
Clean Restrooms
Service
Clean Showers
Cleanliness

Site Details

Campsite
Site Surface
Gravel
Site Type
Back in
Site Space
Not big enough for my travel trailer
Campsite Features
Fire Ring, Picnic Table
Power Hookups
30 Amp
Sewer Connection
Yes

Campground Details

Space Between Lots
Very Close
Sun & Foliage
Sunny Open
Interior Roads
Poor Conditions
Tow Vehicle Parking
Yes, Not Convenient
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Review Count: 131
States Visited: 26
Helpful Reviews: 20

Date of Stay: July, 2018 - $70.00
Overall Rating:

Nice shaded site although on a hill. Huge campground with plenty of activities for young and old. Friendly staff. No wifi or Verizon at our site. We camped at Mount Rushmore KOA at Palmer Gulch in a Fifth Wheel.

Value
Clean Restrooms
Service
Clean Showers
Cleanliness

Site Details

Campsite
Site Number
562
Site Surface
Dirt
Site Type
Pull through
Site Space
Just long enough for my 5th wheel (had to disconnect)
Power Hookups
30 Amp
Sewer Connection
No

Campground Details

Space Between Lots
Very Close
Sun & Foliage
Mostly Shady
Interior Roads
Tight Turns, Poor Conditions
Tow Vehicle Parking
Yes, Not Convenient
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Review Count: 22
States Visited: 7
Helpful Reviews: 7

Date of Stay: July, 2018 - $90.00
Overall Rating:

I would have given a perfect 10, but the sites tend to a be hard to get into. We stayed in 125. We definitely loved this facility and will plan to return soon. The grandkids loved the waterpark area. The entire facility is by far, the best we have seen in our travels throughout the US over 30 years!! Loved this place. We camped at Mount Rushmore KOA at Palmer Gulch in a Fifth Wheel.

Value
Clean Restrooms
Service
Clean Showers
Cleanliness

Site Details

Campsite
Site Number
125
Site Surface
Gravel, Grass
Site Type
Pull through
Site Space
Just long enough for my 5th wheel (had to disconnect)
Campsite Features
Fire Ring, Picnic Table, Patio
Power Hookups
50 Amp
Sewer Connection
Yes

Campground Details

Space Between Lots
Very Close
Sun & Foliage
Some Shade
Tow Vehicle Parking
Yes, Convenient
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Review Count: 14
States Visited: 8
Helpful Reviews: 1

Date of Stay: June, 2018 - $119.00
Overall Rating:

As in all KOA's you are packed in like sardines. We had a premium spot so up front and concrete patio and swing and fire pit and grill. It is a very large resort so lots of people. We had pizza and ice cream at the little store which was good. We had one meal at the restaurant and would not recommend, service was good but food was only okay. My daughter took a horseback ride for 90 minutes and enjoyed it very much. There is absolutely NO cell service or internet up here, you can get some limited internet when you are close to the check in area but that is it. We did get satellite. People were mostly friendly but some were very young and didn't know much but always nice. Great location to go see all the sites. My daughter used the volleyball and basketball courts and made some new friends. Had two pools that looked very nice and always lots to do if you had a young family. We camped at Mount Rushmore KOA at Palmer Gulch in a Fifth Wheel.

Value
Clean Restrooms
Service
Clean Showers
Cleanliness

Site Details

Campsite
Site Number
135
Site Surface
Gravel
Site Type
Pull through
Site Space
Just long enough for my 5th wheel (had to disconnect)
Campsite Features
Fire Ring, Picnic Table, Patio
Power Hookups
50 Amp
Sewer Connection
Yes

Campground Details

Space Between Lots
Very Close
Sun & Foliage
Sunny Open
Tow Vehicle Parking
Yes, Convenient
Tips for other Campers:

Mt Rushmore, Crazy Horse, and take a ride on the Needles Highway if you can - beautiful!

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Review Count: 19
States Visited: 7
Helpful Reviews: 3

Date of Stay: May, 2018 - $42.00
Overall Rating:

We had a pull-thru patio site in the off-season in May. The park was relatively empty, but it seems that the few people out at this time of the year all get clumped together in the empty park anyway. Wish we could be more spread out. No other complaints about the site. It was roomy and had a nice shade tree, but it was cloudy and rainy the whole time we were there. The showers were private and beautiful, but the bathrooms could use an upgrade. The staff was courteous and tried to be helpful, but we were told that the "Taproom" was open thinking we could go to the bar and have a beer. But it was not open for a few more days. We got our beer anyway in the restaurant, but were somewhat disappointed. The entire park is apparently geared toward families with all kinds of activities during the high season, including a miniature golf course and 2 swimming pools. None of that was open when we were there. I cannot imagine how packed the place must get during the summer. As others have mentioned, the Alpine Inn in Hill City has a fantastic filet mignon dinner. We loved the Crazy Horse site. Mt. Rushmore is very close, and we went twice. The second time to see it with lighting at night. We also visited Keystone, which was interesting, but again, much was still closed for the season. No wifi, cable or cellular service. We drank a lot of wine. We camped at Mount Rushmore KOA at Palmer Gulch in a Motorhome.

Value
Clean Restrooms
Service
Clean Showers
Cleanliness

Site Details

Campsite
Site Surface
Gravel
Site Type
Pull through
Campsite Features
Patio
Power Hookups
30 Amp
Sewer Connection
Yes

Campground Details

Space Between Lots
Nearby
Sun & Foliage
Some Shade
Tow Vehicle Parking
Yes, Convenient
Tips for other Campers:

Nearby Mount Rushmore. View at night when they turn on the lights. Crazy Horse is very impressive as a work in progress. Alpine Inn in Hill City has a fantastic filet mignon dinner.

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Review Count: 30
States Visited: 13
Helpful Reviews: 3

Date of Stay: September, 2017 - $90.00
Overall Rating:

This campground is very large and a true "resort" Beautifully kept grounds with a lovely store, little plaza of shops, restaurant and bar on-site. Even a 100 horse riding stable, and those horses were beautiful and obviously well cared for. They had a rodeo on site the day we arrived, really fun. You can rent an ATV, we rented a 6 seater so all 5 of us could go 4 wheeling through the woods nearby. Mt Rushmore is just down the road. I really laugh when people are complaining about wi-fi. It's a campground, in a super hilly area, in fact the mountain view is stunning. I have verizon and service was in and out all through the whole state, through Montana, Wyoming etc depending on how mountainous. If you need Wi-Fi to enjoy yourself go stay in a hotel. There is plenty to do right in this resort, I was not surprised it was packed. Would stay here again, but would pay extra for the better sites that have a concrete pad, table and chairs and a swing!! We camped at Mount Rushmore KOA at Palmer Gulch in a Motorhome.

Value
Clean Restrooms
Service
Clean Showers
Cleanliness

Site Details

Campsite
Site Number
193
Site Surface
Gravel
Site Type
Pull through
Site Space
Not big enough for my motorhome
Campsite Features
Fire Ring
Power Hookups
30 Amp, 50 Amp
Sewer Connection
Yes

Campground Details

Space Between Lots
Very Close
Sun & Foliage
Sunny Open
Tow Vehicle Parking
Yes, Not Convenient
1 camper found this review helpful. Do you? Yes No Undo

Review Count: 1
States Visited: 1
Helpful Reviews: 1

Date of Stay: August, 2017 - $75.00
Overall Rating:

Most overpriced campground that I have every stayed at. Packed like sardines. Nothing terribly bad but just very poor value. We camped at Mount Rushmore KOA at Palmer Gulch in a Travel Trailer.

Value
Clean Restrooms
Service
Clean Showers
Cleanliness

Site Details

Site Type
Back in
Site Space
Long enough for my travel trailer and tow vehicle

Campground Details

Interior Roads
Scraping Branches, Poor Conditions
Tow Vehicle Parking
Yes, Convenient
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