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Custer State Park (Blue Bell Campground) was rated 9 out of 10 based on 30 user reviews. Phone: (605) 255-4515
CGID8477

Custer State Park (Blue Bell Campground)

Camp Information
Sites
342
Date of Stay
September 2013
Latest Rate
$25



Hookups
Electric
yes
50amp
yes
Water
no
Sewer
no
Wireless Internet
no
Cable TV
no
Accommodations
Pull-Thru Sites
no
Big Rig Access
no
Waterfront Access
no
Shade Trees
yes
Pool Access
no
Pets Allowed
yes
Tents Allowed
yes
Family Friendly
yes
Latest Review Information
Ratings (Last 10 Newest/Oldest)
8   7   1   10   9   7   7   10   9   10   
Clean Restrooms (Last 5 Newest/Oldest)
yes  yes  question  yes  yes  
Clean Showers (Last 5 Newest/Oldest)
yes  yes  question  yes  yes  
Review Rating
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[ 8 / 10 ]
September 2013
$25
Loved Custer State Park! Custer State park is beautiful, one of our countries finest. We stayed in the Blue Bell campground which like all others in the park has only electric hookups - no dump or water available. Our site was spacious and level although some sites were not level. The restrooms were the best on any state park we ever used very clean and modern. Blue Bell is a nice peaceful park with great caring hosts and a lovely setting. The park is reasonably close to the Black Hills major attractions. We are planning a trip back to Custer. We camped here in a Motorhome.

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[ 7 / 10 ]
August 2013
$44
The fee reflects the $22/site fee, plus the $15 park entrance fee, plus the $7 reservation fee. We camped in the Blue Bell campground, so no water or sewer at the site. The electric was good, the restrooms super clean, and the hosts very pleasant and helpful. The road through this campground is not designed for larger units and most of the sites have a very deep slope. Sloping may be front or back or as ours was (#33) to the side, so much so that we could not get level. The pad for the trailer was graveled pavement but the whole site was severely sloped, to the point it felt like a fun house. Not our speed. It is a beautiful park, with many very winding roads, beautiful vistas and sharp curves. We enjoyed the park and staff, but would not camp in Blue Bell again. We camped here in a Travel Trailer.

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[ 1 / 10 ]
June 2013
$46
Made a reservation for this Park and paid $31 for the reservation. The site was for electric only. Then when we arrived at the gate they wanted to charge an additional $15 in entry fee. $46.00 a night at a state park with electric only is outrageous. we stayed at the Legion Lake Campground when we ask the host if there was water and a dump available, they advised that it was 7 miles away on the wildlife loop. So I drove 7 miles to the dump and water fill station only to find out that the water fill station did not have a garden hose hookup, so I had no way to fill freshwater. Once I arrive back at the campground I backed in close to the bathroom and use the fresh water fill their with the long garden hose. I stayed in sight number eight and it was paid but not level. The wildlife Loop was nice and the park looked nice but unfortunately for $46 a night I will not be staying in this park again. We camped here in a Motorhome.

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[ 10 / 10 ]
September 2012
$32
This is a gem of a State Park,. It has a dump station, but no water, sewer, Internet or cell. We stayed in the Game Lodge campground. Very well maintained with helpful and friendly staff. Road and pad are paved. The pads are level and wide, all back ins, and big rig friendly. Very quiet with space and privacy around the RV with lots of grass, shade trees, picnic table, and fire ring. The bathrooms are spotlessly clean and there is also a small laundry. There are so many things to see and do in this wonderful area. We would stay here again. We camped here in a Motorhome.

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[ 9 / 10 ]
September 2012
$24
This review is for the Game Lodge Campground. It was a wonderful experience; clean restrooms, great location in the park, nice paved walking trail for the dog. Be sure to fill up with water either before you get here or at the park as there is none on site. We would stay here again in a minute. We camped here in a Motorhome.

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[ 7 / 10 ]
August 2012
$40
Spartan and simple, with electricity only, it is flat with limited shade. Its access to the State Game Lodge and the activities there make it a good choice for exploring Custer State Park. We camped here in a Motorhome.

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[ 7 / 10 ]
July 2012
$25
Good central location to explore the Black Hills. Lower loop site 28 was located on small stream. Limited generator use between 8-8 2 hour intervals. Campground was quiet and clean located on lovely lake, nearby hiking trails. We camped here in a Travel Trailer.

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[ 10 / 10 ]
July 2012
$38
Reservations recommended for this park. We decided to try the park based on the good reviews. Its a great place. Great layout makes it easy for even big RVs towing trailer. Staff is very friendly and helpful. Even had park host stop by twice to make sure everything was good. Clean laundry and showers. Kids enjoyed it as much as we did. Sites level and have privacy between spaces. We camped here in a Motorhome.

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[ 9 / 10 ]
July 2012
$27
From Australia on our first RVing trip, we stayed for a 4 nights in the State Game Lodge campground in Custer State Park. The park environment was wonderfully natural, with huge grassed gaps between sites (10m or so) and a fair number of trees (more close to the creek). The overall impression was of comfortable spaciousness, despite the surprising lack of water or sewer hookups. Most, if not all, of the sites were reverse in - but there was plenty of maneuvering room, even for big rigs. Wonderful setting within the state park, with the State Game Lodge a short walk away, and a convenience store and the Peter Norbeck visitor center about 20min walk via concrete pavement. Multiple toilet/shower facilities through the campground were in constant use, but remained quite clean and reasonably dry given the throughput of campers. Of note, there were evening talks by the rangers aimed at kids each night at 9pm in a hall at the campground. Laundry available, and adequate, but some distance from our site. Playground present, and swimming available at an artificial lagoon. Good AT&T reception. Overall, wonderful campgrounds, and a worthy destination in its own right, for which I would have willingly paid double (given the extensive use we made of the rangers' educational programs). I am glad we booked the site months in advance! I would stay at this location again at every opportunity! We camped here in a Motorhome.

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[ 10 / 10 ]
June 2012
$30
This was the Sylvan Lake campground in Custer State Park. I did not see it listed above. It was a great campground! We were all right in the woods and behind my campsite was nothing but forest and hillside! It was gorgeous! Plus there was a path to Sylvan Lake and the Lodge so I could walk there during the day (I did not want to walk through the woods at night.) We camped here in a Motorhome.

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[ 10 / 10 ]
June 2012
$24
We loved this park. There is so much to do! We stayed at State Game and our site was level and nicely placed. The campground is clean and well tended, with a pretty stream along one side and animals passing by on the other. Restrooms were spotless. We'd stay here again. We camped here in a Motorhome.

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[ 10 / 10 ]
June 2012
$27
We stayed in two campgrounds while at Custer State Park, this was the first. Multiple looped, paved roads and sites, central dump station, fresh water at dump station. Restrooms were great. They were clean, well lit, and the shower had private stalls with plastic shower inserts. We didn't see any buffalo at this campground but we saw plenty while we were here. We hiked up the ridge across the road and ran into a bighorn sheep guarding the trail. There is a store and restaurant just up the road a short distance. There is a ton of things to see and do while you are here. Now I know why reservations were so hard to get: book early! We camped here in a Travel Trailer.

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[ 8 / 10 ]
June 2012
$26
I stayed in the Game Lodge Campground within the Custer State Park itself for four days. I chose this campground because of the spacious and level sites and the views of the wildlife that passed by every evening, mainly antelope. The sites are very large with most having a shade tree and the sites are cement so the jacks do not sink in the ground. The showers and bathrooms are very well kept and the water in the shower stayed warm for the whole shower. The rangers are very helpful and friendly. The campground is very well kept and there was a free play given the first night I stayed there. This is the best state campground that I have ever stayed in and would definitely stay here again. We camped here in a Motorhome.

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[ 10 / 10 ]
August 2011
$25
There are multiple campgrounds within Custer State Park. We stayed at the Game Lodge Campground. Please read the other reviews below: we agree with the others' comments. Very nice campground, lots of grass, lovely stream, small pond for kids to swim in, paved trail leads up to the Lodge, a store, and the visitor center. There's a wooden fence separating the camp from a large field in which a herd of buffalo came to graze multiple times during the stay. Bath house was sparkling clean. We made good use of the laundry facility. No problems filling the water tank. (I think the new dump station must have taken care of the water issue the previous campers described). Mosquitoes were gone by late August. Advance reservations are needed, at least in the summer. Booking a month in advance, in all of Custer SP, we found only two sites with electric available for the dates we wanted. When we were here, all of the reservable campgrounds appeared to be full. However, the one campground for same day camping (not reservable) was only about 20% occupied during the weekdays, so would be a good alternative if you have an RV that can boondock. Pit toilets up there might make it a less favorable choice for those of us using the public restrooms. We camped here in a Tent Trailer.

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[ 9 / 10 ]
August 2011
$24
We enjoyed our stay at this state park campground. The reservation site has pictures of each site so we knew what we were getting before arriving. Although our site #27E said no shade it did have a nice big tree to shade our picnic table. The sites are spread out, not too close to your neighbor with plenty of elbow room. Sites by the creek had plenty of shade, others may have none. The site is surrounded either by the creek or fencing to keep out the bison. The views are nice and exciting when the bison roam nearby. There is a small swimming beach in a pond, but after seeing the bison use it, we decided not to swim in it. Firewood is available at the Game Lodge store a short jaunt down the road. The bathrooms were well kept and there were 2 bath buildings. Also, a laundry building is onsite but we didn't use it. There are lots of bats which isn't bad, but we were by a barn/theater and there were lots of them. This had us ducking and jumping after dusk when we sat around the fire. Definitely would camp here or any of the Custer State Park campgrounds again. We had no problems. We camped here in a Travel Trailer.

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[ 7 / 10 ]
July 2011
$24
This is a great value for the money and a nice park to boot. There were no issues getting water in the loop as there are four water faucets through out the campground, one easily accessible by the shower house. The roads and parking pads are paved and the grass area between the sites is large. When I informed the camp host that some of the over hanging branches when pulling into the loop were too low for the height of my RV, he notified a campground maintenance staff and by the next day the branches had been trimmed. Pretty surprising. I will stay here again. We camped here in a Motorhome.

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[ 7 / 10 ]
July 2011
$20
Nice location and pretty campground. Good Verizon coverage. But: 1) Dump station has no fresh water. You also block one of the interior roads while using the dump. 2) Fresh water spigots are harder to find than black hills gold. You need 75' of hose and are blocking the road while you fill up. 3) Lots and lots of mosquitoes. We camped here in a Fifth Wheel.

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[ 10 / 10 ]
June 2011
$24
The Game Lodge Campground at Custer State Park is a gem. It is centrally located. Buffalo can usually be seen right from the campground. There are shady sites near the stream and more open sites on the 'top' of the loop. Paved trail from Game Lodge to Grace Coolidge campground for biking or hiking along the stream. Peter Norbeck visitor center is nearby. For 2011, there is a new dump station near this campground on the Wildlife Loop road (also a station at the campground). Pond at campground for kids to play in as well as a playground. Laundry facilities- cold water only. Factor in a reservation fee for non-resident of about $8 and park entrance fee of $15 for a week. We would definitely stay again. We camped here in a Fifth Wheel.

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[ 9 / 10 ]
June 2011
$28
Nice campground. We stayed 2 nights: had to pay extra because we were not South Dakota residents. No one ever checked our reservation. They had a campground host but he didn't seem to do anything. It appeared some of the sites had more tents and people than they should have. We would come back in the off season. We camped here in a Motorhome.

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[ 9 / 10 ]
June 2011
$25
Game Farm campground. Nice electric-only campground. Very clean and pleasant. Two good bath/shower facilities. Seemed to be the nicest of the Custer SP campgrounds we looked at. Huge sites, lots of grass, creek nearby, trees, laundry, and paved bike trails. We camped here in a Motorhome.

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[ 10 / 10 ]
April 2011
$18
For a state park this is about as good as it gets. No real need to drive to see the wildlife. It comes to the CG especially on weekdays when there are fewer small human noisemakers and dogs. We camped here in a Fifth Wheel.

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[ 10 / 10 ]
July 2010
$30
My family likes state park campgrounds. Custer State Park Game Lodge is one of the best. Has paved roads and sites. Has huge, well maintained, grassy, shady sites. An excellent location with friendly, helpful campground hosts. Highly recommended. We camped here in a Motorhome.

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[ 9 / 10 ]
August 2009
$13
Excellent setting, clean good power at sites. Most spots level and paved grassy surroundings. Avoid Biker week (Sturgis) first week in August, thousands of noisy transient bikers cruising through the park, nice lodge and good meals at lodge. We camped here in a Motorhome.

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[ 10 / 10 ]
August 2009
$25
One of the nicest state parks we have stayed at. Easy back-in to our huge site with a backyard where the bison and big-horned sheep roamed. We had a paved pad with lots of grass around. No problem with satellite reception in the row our site was in. It was heavily treed down by the creek though. Very nice shower houses which were spotlessly cleaned daily. You could have eaten off the floor! A beautiful lodge located right next door with an excellent fine-dining restaurant. We would have liked to stay longer, but all sites were reserved for the weekend. Very comfortable and relaxing: we would definitely return. We camped here in a Fifth Wheel.

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[ 10 / 10 ]
August 2009
$22
I echo the other comments. This is one of the top State Park campgrounds ever, in our experience. Make sure to spend at least a week to take in the local sights. Stay away from the first week in August unless you own a motorcycle! Overall, very clean, well laid out with lots of room and shade. You can do all booking on the Internet and it all works. We will be back again, just not the first week of August though! We camped here in a Fifth Wheel.

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[ 9 / 10 ]
June 2009
$22
Beautiful State Park with lots to see and do. Wide strips of grass in between sites with plenty of room for awnings and slides. 30/50 Amp service and never encountered problems with a full campground. There are sites along the creek but they appear to be for tents, tent trailers or small C-Class. We were in E-18 and were able to get a signal for our dome satellite. No cell or Aircard reception (Verizon) except at the park entrance. This is a large state park and there are lots of very nice campgrounds scattered through out the park. Center Lake campground is first come and there are sites for tents and rv’s, although this campground isn’t big rig friendly. We’re 38’ and we saw a few sites that would have worked. The only reason I mention this campground is that there was hardly anyone there on Sat. There are four lodges within the park that offer dining, and they have gift shops inside. There is a grocery store within the park too. Great wildlife loop that was very enjoyable and we saw turkeys, deer, pronghorns prairie dogs and buffalo. On the 16A heading towards Mt. Rushmore we encountered wild burros that were begging carrots and apples from park visitors. Park brochure (pdf): http://www.sdgfp.info/Publications/Parks/Tatanka.pdf Campground Maps (pdf) http://www.sdgfp.info/Parks/CampMaps/CusterSP.pdf The price of the campsite does not reflect the park pass that you need. I think it was around $18.00 (rv & toad) for 7 days and if that’s not correct hopefully someone will correct me in the next review. There are a number of picnic grounds and lakes to wet your line. We would love to return and spend a week next time We camped here in a Motorhome.

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[ 10 / 10 ]
March 2009
$17
Mountain goats and deer were all around. I could see newly stocked brook trout in the stream from my trailer window. I caught one of the biggest brown trout of my life at 24" in the campground pond. Plenty of 15" plus rainbows as well. Cleanest vault toilets ever. Very quiet. Wood available at the registration kiosk. Bike/hike trail connects the campground. Campground at the north entrance of the Custer Wildlife loop where buffalo and pronghorns abound. We camped here in a Travel Trailer.

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[ 10 / 10 ]
July 2008
$24
Excellent state park. One of the best we have stayed at. We were here for 7 days. The last night the Buffalo came right down to the field just outside our trailer. There are lots of things to do while in the Park. I would recommed a 1/2 day horse ride out of the Blue Bell lodge. We camped here in a Travel Trailer.

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[ 10 / 10 ]
July 2008
$24
This is an awesome campground with buffalo right outside the fence in herds. I has all the amenities plus a good location; just a minute's drive to the main visitor center. We camped here in a Fifth Wheel.

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[ 9 / 10 ]
May 2007
$15
We reserved our site online with no problems. Online site is very helpful as you can view the site and the informations for each such as full sun, shade, length of site. We found this very helpful. The bathrooms were immaculate. Outside the fence surrounding the campground was a herd of roaming buffalo. This state park is awesome with so many beautiful areas to tour and the animal life is wonderful. 1 of our tour days we encountered the 2 separate herds of wild begging burros who LOVE junk food. We were in CSP for 7 days and used it as a base to tour the Wild Horse Sanctuary,surrounding towns. Would return in a heartbeat.There are informational shows in the barn however we were too busy touring around to attend any. If you go allow enough time to truly enjoy this park and the surrounding areas. The only reason a 9 is no full hookups. There is a dump station with water if you run low. We camped here in a Motorhome.

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