Mickelson Trail & The Badlands Bike Tour

The Best of Both Worlds: Visit South Dakota’s most treasured monuments and National Parks while riding its longest rail trail

Whether you enjoy history, scenery or just being in the saddle, biking through South Dakota has something for everyone. Beginning in Badlands National Park, you’ll come face-to-face with bison, prairie dogs, big-horned sheep, and the incomparable landscape that the American Lakota called “mako sica,” or “land bad.” Hear first-hand from travel writer, Karen Rubin, as she recounts her thrilling experience on this tour including two encounters in one day with bison!


The George S. Mickelson Trail, also known as “The Big Mick,” was dedicated in 1998 in memory of the late governor who acted in strong support of transforming the former rail line into a multi-use trail. As the trail weaves its way through the Black Hills, monuments to Crazy Horse and the founding fathers break up the rolling landscape of an incredible ride.


Request a Tour Itinerary for more detailed information and logistics. Custom bike tour departures available for groups of 6 or more.

Tour Highlights

George S. Mickelson Trail

Crazy Horse Memorial

Mount Rushmore

Badlands National Park

Needles Highway

Wildlife Loop

Lodging Options

Circle View Guest Ranch

Holiday Inn Express

Blue Bell Lodge

Springhill Suites

Day 1: Meet your group in Rapid City, SD and shuttle to the Pinnacles Entrance of Badlands National Park. Glide around its smooth, paved roads and keep your eyes open for bison, prairie dogs and many other native species residing in the park.


Day 2: Shuttle from Badlands National Park to mile “44.5” of the Mickelson rail-trail in Custer. Ride downhill on the crushed limestone surface toward the city of Edgemont and your lodging for the night.


Day 3: Following Custer, ride to the Crazy Horse Memorial statue and into Hill City, home of the South Dakota State Railroad Museum. End your day at the Mystic Trail Head.  We will shuttle to Mount Rushmore at the end of the day.


Day 4: Start riding on the famous Needles Highway, and make your way to Custer State Park. Ride the park’s Wildlife Loop, hopefully catching a glimpse of some of South Dakota’s native wildlife.


Day 5: Enjoy another day on the trail. Ride the final miles of the Mickelson Trail all the way to Deadwood, a true wild west town made famous by the murder of Wild Bill Hickok.


Day 6: Savor your last bit of time on the Mickelson Trail as we ride through beautiful Spearfish Canyon.  We shuttle back to Rapid City from Spearfish SD at the end of the day.

“The Mickelson Trail Tour is so much more than just the Hall-Of-Fame Rail Trail! This tour also takes you through the Badlands, the Black Hills, Custer State Park, and Spearfish Canyon. Each location is so beautiful and different from the previous one!”

~Nina N., New Milford, PA

Trip Information


Trip Length - Days

New York Finger Lakes Bike Tour
Tour Type
Road and Rail Trail
Tour Rating
Bike Tour - National Parks - Wilderness Voyageurs
National Park Visited
Bike Tour Routes with Elevation gain and loss
Route Overview

Daily Mileage

Check In Location
Rapid City, SD
Rapid City Bike tours
Tour Area
SAG Vehicle New York Finger Lakes Bike Tour
Support & Gear Vehicle
E-bikes Allowed

Required Specifications

  • 50 pounds or less weight limit
  • Pedal assist only
  • Removable battery
  • 5+ hour battery capacity

Minimum Age


5 Breakfasts | 6 Lunches | 3 Dinners

2024 Pricing
  • PP Double Occupancy

  • Single Supplement*

  • Standard Bike Rental


*This is required if you are traveling solo or if you are traveling with someone but require separate beds.


Select your departure date and click to reserve your bike tour!

If your desired departure date is within 30 days, please call our office to book, it will be unavailable to book on-line.


If your desired date is no longer available, click here to complete our waitlist request form. Would you like a date for just your group? Please fill out our private departure request form or call our office number below to speak to one of our reservation staff. We may open additional tours, and those on the waitlist receive priority on future tours.

Related Tours