New! Book Your 2023 Activities online! Looking for a gift card? We have those too!

Peter Norbeck Scenic Byway

Scenic Road

Cruise through history

The Peter Norbeck Scenic Byway complements the park's three scenic drives and includes some of the most dramatic natural and historic features in the Black Hills. It consists of a loop made up of four numbered highways: SD 87 (Needles Highway), SD 89, SD 244, and US Route 16A (Iron Mountain Road). Sites include the Needles, Mount Rushmore, and a bird’s-eye view of the rocky peaks and forested hills of the Black Hills National Forest.

The byway is named for Peter Norbeck, a South Dakota conservationist, Governor and U.S. Senator. Norbeck planned and surveyed most of the roads located within the park and his vision inspired Custer State Park, Norbeck Wildlife Preserve and Mount Rushmore National Memorial..

Where is the best place to stay?

Sylvan Lake Lodge in all its splendor can be found right at the northern-most entrance to this scenic byway, and the historic State Game Lodge is only a couple miles from another entrance at Iron Mountain Road

Take it easy

In the words of Peter Norbeck, "You're not supposed to drive here at 60 miles an hour. To do the scenery half justice, people should dirve 20 or under; to do it full justice, they should get out and walk."

Expect travel time of about two to three hours for the whole byway; but probably about an hour and fifteen minutes to travel the part just from the State Game Lodge to Mount Rushmore; or about the same time from Sylvan Lake to the State Game Lodge.

See it on the map