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Driving the Needles Highway

St. Louis, MO
Level Contributor
3,806 posts
98 reviews
Driving the Needles Highway

For the Needles Highway, ..Is this one better from North to South or from South to North? -- We will be coming from Custer State Park Lodge to Sylvan Lake and back. We could take it there or take it back or take it both ways? What do you recommend?

I heard how Iron Mt. Road is best from South to North with the way it frames Mount Rushmore. We'll be doing that one the following day and coming back on an easier fast route.

4 replies to this topic
Pitman, New Jersey
Destination Expert
for Rapid City, South Dakota
Level Contributor
6,378 posts
61 reviews
1. Re: Driving the Needles Highway

Some people prefer driving north to south, but if you are coming from State Game Lodge (I assume this is what you meant), it would make more sense to drive it from south to north. We have done this, and I will say the southern end of the Needles isn't overly interesting. As you get to around midpoint, it becomes more scenic. To me, direction is much more critical in driving Iron Mountain Rd.

St. Louis, MO
Level Contributor
3,806 posts
98 reviews
2. Re: Driving the Needles Highway

Thanks. Is going south to north and stopping at Sylvan Lake far enough? We when we do this drive were going to make Sylvan Lake our destination and hang out over there for a while.

Arlington, Virginia
Destination Expert
for Arlington
Level Contributor
14,974 posts
121 reviews
3. Re: Driving the Needles Highway

The Needles Highway essentially terminates at Sylvan Lake. You don’t need to go further north. Enjoy the lake—the loop walk around the lake is quite scenic and not long or difficult.

St. Louis, MO
Level Contributor
3,806 posts
98 reviews
4. Re: Driving the Needles Highway

Great Just what I needed to know. Thanks.

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