Explore the most popular trails in Bear Butte State Park with hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

Mato Paha or "Bear Mountain" is the Lakota name given to this site. To the Cheyenne, it is "Noahvose." This geological formation is one of several intrusions of igneous rock in the Black Hills that formed millions of years ago. The mountain is sacred to many American Indian tribes who come here to hold religious ceremonies. Please be respectful of worshippers and their religious practices.

hiking
1 month ago

Only made it to first peak where there is a bench, snow and sludge made footing difficult nearer at the top...took 30 min to get to this point. Amazing hike, even in poorer conditions, hiked mid October. Saw bison, deer, heard Native group drumming and chanting. Will return!!

hiking
1 month ago

Too windy. Couldn’t finish. Very nice views though. Will definitely come back.

hiking
bugs
no shade
off trail
rocky
2 months ago

Amazing view! Very narrow areas, Your literally scaling a mountain. Beware of snakes, stay on trail! Staff at education center is wonderful!

hiking
2 months ago

Not my favorite , but a must do experience . Did it twice , grandkids loved it.

hiking
2 months ago

Wonderful hike. The trail is in good shape and well marked. The Butte is a sacred place for several tribes. Hence, you'll see prayer cloths tied to the trees and brush throughout the hike. Great views

hiking
no shade
rocky
2 months ago

Beautiful views and very spiritual feeling as you climb. Very narrow paths with quick ascents. I wouldn’t recommend small children as you get higher up. Amazing views of the raptors and other birds flying close by the mountain.

hiking
bugs
rocky
3 months ago

I was visiting Sturgis on my motorcycle when I saw this butte and knew that I wanted to hike it. It's a pleasant distance, with some good intensity. The trail surface is often loose, sharp rocks, so wear appropriate footwear. The views are wonderful. The flies were obnoxious, so I'd recommend some bug spray.

hiking
3 months ago

Well worth it to get to the trail as the sun rises and hike (the park opens 30 minutes before sunrise). You’ll find amazing views and cooler temps!

hiking
3 months ago

Nice trail - but limited shade - take a hat, sunscreen and water -there is a drinking water faucet at the beginning of the trail - beautiful views the whole way up. Get to the observation deck at the top for the panorama !

hiking
4 months ago

Completely random stop on our drive while on vacation. Accidentally hiked Bear Butte in flip flops and no sunscreen.... NOT recommended, but absolutely worth it!!! (I say that now, my feet may say otherwise tomorrow....) At the very top of favorite places on the planet!

hiking
4 months ago

highly recommend. the views are incredible and it's an amazing place and experience.

hiking
4 months ago

We learned this was a sacred place to the native Americans, we felt lucky to be able to hike the trail. Great views along the way, be ready for some thin trails along the steep slopes. The views from the top make it all worth while.

hiking
rocky
5 months ago

good hike, a little more challenging than I anticipated

hiking
5 months ago

Pretty challenging on the way up but worth the view! Took us one hour to reach the top. We hiked on a beautiful but windy day and passed about 5-6 groups of hikers. Scenery was Prettier than I was expecting!

hiking
5 months ago

Great hike, great views. Fairly steep but no scrambling. Very windy in spots this day but it added to the experience. Trail was taken care of and there are stairs in parts, viewing platform at top.

hiking
5 months ago

Great Hike! Rocky, steep at times, but no scrambling . Exposed, so watch the weather. Views the whole way. You have to watch the trail so as not to trip, but any time you stop to look around it's absolutely stunning.

hiking
rocky
5 months ago

rocky
5 months ago

hiking
5 months ago

the snakes are out.

6 months ago

I would rate this as hard when comparing it to other trails. We recorded 3.1 miles round trip from parking lot. You hike on a lots of rocks, lots of places with challenging foot placement. I recommended harder soled shoes with ankle support. Trail very narrow at points. Great view and fun. Up, down with a break at the top was a little over 2 hours.

hiking
6 months ago

There is a $6 fee to enter per vehicle, so bring cash! This hike starts you off by taking you up very quickly. Note: If you are not use to high elevation, get ready for some deep breaths! It was a beautiful hike from start to finish. Dogs are not allowed since the land is protected, and I really like that. There are benches along the way that you can take a min to relax or mediate . It took us about 1.5 hours up and down. We werent speed walking but we werent going super slow either. Worth every step!

hiking
7 months ago

Loved this hike.

11 months ago

Awesome hike with Gorgeous views. Small herd of mule deer near the top of the mountain which added to the scenery.

hiking
Mon Oct 29 2018

Great hike. Lots of switchbacks and some loose rocks, but overall very fun and quite spectacular.

Sat Sep 15 2018

We got there super early as the sun was coming up. Being a sacred Indian mountain and the prayer cloths added to the mystery of the mountain. The mountain itself looks unlike the other mountains in the Black Hills and feels open and great views abound. We loved this place!

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