Iron Mountain Road; Mount Rushmore

Discussion in 'Campground / Trip Planning & Suggestions ?' started by james13619, Jul 24, 2013.

  1. james13619

    james13619 NewB Coleman Mesa

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    Any one driven this road? Can I do it in a monster RV? Making plans for a big trip in a big RV
    I just can't get my grand kids and their parents in my pup ... sad face here
    But they're paying for it ... Happy Face Here! All I have to do is drive, I'm OK with that

    http://www.dakotagraph.com/2013/05/hdr-highway-iron-mountain-road.html

    [​IMG]

    Gezz... I guess if they can this big ol' thing through
    May have to give the DW a couple of glasses of wine beforehand though...
     
  2. JeepMama

    JeepMama New Member

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    My husband has been talking about making this trip for the past week or so... he is thinking next summer or later... But, I will need the wine and perhaps something a little stronger! That is a long drive from Pennsylvania and I am not known for having a relaxed, easy going temperament!
     
  3. CompuCamper

    CompuCamper Where to camp next?

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    I just got back from there. Oh, what a beautiful place the Black Hills is.

    The picture of the bus is a older bus that fit's though the tunnels that the business is using. I would not try a large RV on the Iron Mountain Road or the Needles Highway. The roads has steep grades, hairpin turns, one lane bridges and tunnels. You could drive the roads with a popup or most Truck Campers. It is best to drive a car on these roads. There is a road to Mount Rushmore that any RV can use to get to Mount Rushmore.

    There is so much to do in the Black Hills and your family will love this area.

    I camp is Custer State Park at the Game Lodge CG. The campgrounds are great in Custer SP. Get Reservations before you go to the Black Hills because it is a popular area.
     
  4. kimlovescamping

    kimlovescamping New Member

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    We went in June and did Iron Mt and the wildlife loop and needles highway. The really narrow tunnels are on needles highway. If you go online to Custer State Park they have a map that tells the width of all the tunnels (i think there are 6). We avoided the tunnels with the pup...just in case. It is new and we didn't want to risk scratching it up. One of the tunnels is about 8 feet wide. NARROW. I would agree with Compucamper that the steep grades and narrow roads would be nerve racking with that big RV. Good luck! If you need help finding that map let me know.
     
  5. james13619

    james13619 NewB Coleman Mesa

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  6. kimlovescamping

    kimlovescamping New Member

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  7. james13619

    james13619 NewB Coleman Mesa

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    Sweet! Thanks. Now I just need to stock up on some cheap red zinfandel.

    [​IMG]
     
  8. AZJim1

    AZJim1 Member

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    When we went there a few years ago we arrived from the South and camped at Sylvan Lake CG which was beautiful but is also right along the Needles Highway. We got up the next day and while I was outside doing a few things the campground host was talking to a guy with a Travel Trailer who had come in through one of the tunnels and was very upset because he had hit one of the upper sides of the trailer on one of the tunnels and also trashed the awning . . . I made a mental note that I was going to drive them without the trailer and make sure I went out one of the other ways.

    It was foggy and a little later the campground host was talking to a guy across the road who was saying that they were going to give Rushmore one last try on their way out . . . and I thought OH CRAP I just drove three days to NOT see Mt. Rushmore. So we didn't even head over to Rushmore until early afternoon after doing a quick tour through the tunnels and some of the rest of Custer SP and were rewarded with a break in the fog for a couple hours at Rushmore while we walked around. As we were leaving the fog was closing back in and it was getting hard to see it again. We drove by Crazy Horse on the way back to the campground and the fog was so thick you could not see it at all, in fact you couldn't even see the entrance station from the highway.

    So the second morning we packed up the camper and pulled out and OOPS turned the wrong way and started driving the Needles Highway . . . OH CRAP! But before I got to the first really narrow tunnel I was able to do a U-turn at a just wide-enough pull-out.

    So we turned around and got our CORRECT bearings and decided to give Crazy Horse another shot and it was clear of fog so we were able to stop and see it on our way out.

    My only regret of the trip was not spending more time in the area as our real destination was Yellowstone NP. Rushmore was kind of a side trip, but the Black Hills area is very beautiful and I want to go back and spend more time there.

    ENJOY!
     
  9. colorado_camper

    colorado_camper Member

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    We just got back from there and did Iron Mountain Rd with just the van. I'm glad we did that because a lot of the roads are steep, narrow and winding and I felt that they would be pretty hard on the TV if I was pulling the trailer. When we arrived at Custer SP, coming in at the Sylvan Lake entrance, and we were greeted by a traffic jam coming out of the park at Tunnel 4 because 2 families had decided to ignore the tunnel information and had come down Needles Hwy with gigantic 5ers. I was able to weave my way through the stationary traffic and around these two idiots and be on my way.

    The tunnels on Iron Mountain Road are listed at these sizes: Tunnel 1 is 14' wide and 12'9" high, Tunnel 2 is 13'2" wide and 12'2" high and Tunnel 3 is 13'4" wide and 12'4" high. If you do the drive, go from the south towards Rushmore and you will see the carving in front of you through tunnels 1 and 3 and in your rear-view mirror through tunnel 2.
     
  10. Troutfishing

    Troutfishing Member

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    The tour bus just makes it through those tunnels, you can tell those drivers know the exact place to drive, with a few inches to spare. I would suggest by vehicle, motorcycle or by foot, the motorcycle being my preferred ride.
     

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