Big Sioux Recreation Area Trails
On the banks of the majestic Big Sioux River, the Big Sioux Recreation Area is an impressive mixture of dense woodland and sweeping prairie dotted with wildflowers and tall grasses. Originally formed by melting glaciers, the river is flanked by rolling hills that serve as a magnet for hikers and bikers. The land comprising the Big Sioux Recreation Area was initially inhabited by Native Americans, who utilized the river as their primary source of food, drinking water, and transportation. Today, an historic log house still stands from when one of the area’s first settlers, Ole Bergerson, built his own home by hand.
In spite of its convenient proximity to the urban areas of Sioux Falls and Brandon just off I-90, the area provides outdoor enthusiasts with a serene, “back to nature” experience. Big Sioux is a haven for a wide variety of recreational pursuits, including biking, hiking, camping, archery, canoeing, snowmobiling, bird watching, and cross-country skiing. A public lodge is open during the winter months to serve as a warming respite for those who come to play in the snow.
Mountain bikers have their run of nearly five miles of easy biking trails consisting of two main loops flanking the Big Sioux River. The trail is a well-maintained grass and dirt surface that meanders among sprawling meadows and thickly wooded areas. Along the way, you’ll be hard-pressed not to stop and partake of the breathtaking views of the river valley from the elevated portion of the trail. With some challenging inclines, adventurous bridges, and some daring narrow stretches, there’s never a dull moment on the Big Sioux bike trails.