Today, the vast reservoir is a popular destination for camping, fishing, picnicking and other outdoor activities. Getting there: From Rapid City, drive 36 miles south on U. Getting there: From Rapid City, drive southwest on U. 16 to South Dakota 87 south of Hill City; then southeast to the Sylvan Lake Day Use Area, where Trail 9 begins just across the footbridge leading to the swimming beach. Trail 9 is the most traveled and easiest route to the top of Harney Peak.

Getting there: The damn is located on Owl Creek about eight miles east of Belle Fourche. Expert tip: Trail maps may be obtained at the Peter Norbeck Visitor Center or from the U. Go slow, carry water and prepare yourself for a spectacular view from the stone fire lookout at the summit. 10: Little Spearfish Falls The scene: Nestled below the popular Northern Hills restaurant the Latchstring Inn, Little Spearfish Falls is know as a quiet little spot not too far off the beaten path.

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Above those cliffs is where you'll find the Stratobowl rim walk, an easy mile or so hike from U. On your right, you will see a gravel road that is blocked off by a gate. Walk around the gate to begin the trail; it's a 20-minute walk to the Stratobowl overlook.

Expert tip: Visit the area at the end of the summer to catch the most scenic prairie vistas.

Expert tip: On the edge of Skyline Drive is a little gem of local history at the site where a dead pine tree enclosed in concrete overlooks Rapid City.

Locals call it "Hangman's Tree," where an alleged act of vigilante justice occurred in the summer of 1877.

Motorized travel is allowed on designated roads or trails. Wall is about 50 miles east of Rapid City if you take Interstate 90.

Getting there: Buffalo Gap National Grasslands is the second-largest grassland in the U. Expert tip: There are no charges, fees, permits or registration required to visit the grasslands. 5: Stratobowl The scene: The Stratobowl is one of the most famous areas for local science nerds — the spot where some of the earliest manned balloon flights were launched in the 1930s, marking the beginnings of the space program.

If you're swimming, be aware that even on the warmest summer days, the water stays at a very cool temperature. They are commonly seen flying above shorelines and waterways.

Getting there: From Rapid City, take Jackson Boulevard toward Pactola Reservoir. Located on the southwest side of Pactola Lake, the trail includes two loop trails and a spur trail to an overlook, and is a total of 2.2 miles long.

In such a diverse region, one laden with beautiful places and special sights, there's much to celebrate about the greater Black Hills region.

To spur that pride of place, and perhaps a bit of conversation, the Rapid City Journal relives a special series titled "100 scenes of western South Dakota."So, what makes a "scene?

" Well, it could be a place to be seen, somewhere to create a scene, or just some place that is nice to see. 1: The Badger Hole The scene: Charles "Badger" Clark was honored as South Dakota's first poet laureate. Expert tip: Walk through the door of the cabin and pause, reflecting on a time when the hand-written words of a poet were a window into the soul of a person and their purpose.