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Wind Cave National Park

26611 U.S. Highway 385
Hot Springs, South Dakota 57747

Phone: Visitor Information
(605) 745-4600

EXPLORE Wind Cave National Park!

BEST Places to PicnicOne of the world's longest and most complex caves and 28,295 acres of mixed-grass prairie, ponderosa pine forest, and associated wildlife are the main features of the park. The cave is well known for its outstanding display of boxwork, an unusual cave formation composed of thin calcite fins resembling honeycombs. 

The park's mixed-grass prairie is one of the few remaining and is home to native wildlife such as bison, elk, pronghorn, mule deer, coyotes, and prairie dogs.

Plan Your Visit

Wind Cave Visitor Center is open daily from 8:00 am to 4:30 pm all year except Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Year's Day. During the summer the Visitor Center hours are expanded (schedule).

The Visitor Center is located 11 miles North of Hot Springs, SD. Stop in at the visitor center for information, cave tours, exhibits, slide and video programs, maps, books, backcountry permits, Senior and Access Passes, and Federal Recreational Lands Passes.

The Visitor Center contains three exhibit rooms featuring cave exploration, cave formations, early cave history, the Civilian Conservation Corps, park wildlife, and resource management. An 18-minute movie: Wind Cave: One Park, Two Worlds; is shown throughout the day.

Cave Tours are offered daily except Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Year's Day. All cave tours leave from the visitor center. The visitor center and the cave are accessible to people with disabilities, please inquire at the visitor center. The park is opened all year. There are 30 miles of hiking trails where visitors can view the native plants and wildlife of the prairie ecosystem.

History

The Wind Cave area has been protected since 1903, when it became our seventh oldest national park. Regarded as sacred by American Indians, cave exploration did not begin until 1881, when the entrance was noticed by two brothers, Jesse and Tom Bingham. They heard a loud whistling noise, which led them to a small hole in the ground, the cave's only natural opening.

Nature & Science

One of the world's longest and most complex caves and 28,295 acres of mixed-grass prairie, ponderosa pine forest, and associated wildlife are the main features of the park. The cave is well known for its outstanding display of boxwork, an unusual cave formation composed of thin calcite fins resembling honeycombs. The park's mixed-grass prairie is one of the few remaining and is home to native wildlife such as bison, elk, pronghorn, mule deer, coyotes, and prairie dogs.

Places to Picnic

  • Visitor Center

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