The Palisades: Little Park, Big Views

The Palisades: Little Park, Big Views

Palisades State Park may be South Dakota’s second-smallest state park, but it stunningly delivers on natural beauty. At the heart of the park, the steady flow of Split Rock Creek carves its way through 50-foot cliffs of pink Sioux Quartzite. For years, visitors have marveled at the beauty of the landscape—truly unique to South Dakota—and have traveled to the site to camp, picnic, swim and hike.

Located in southeastern South Dakota, “the Palisades” are located 10 miles outside of Garretson. Only a 30-minute drive from Sioux Falls, the park is the perfect destination for an excursion with family and friends.

In the 1870s, a large flour and feed mill, powered by the creek’s rushing waters, was located on the site, and silver was discovered downstream only a decade later. Today, you won’t find any precious metals at the park, but you will see rock climbers scaling the cliffs and kayakers leisurely paddling through the creek. If you can make it to the top of a quartzite formation, the views are truly breathtaking.

In addition to a few short hiking trails, Palisades State Park also offers six cabins for rent, one group lodge, and 34 campsites that accommodate tents or RVs. The campgrounds are open year-round, and picnic tables and fire pits sprinkle the entire park grounds, so if you’re staying late into the evening, you can choose the perfect location to get cozy and make the perfect s’more.

You can make a reservation to camp or lodge at the park by visiting or by calling 1-800-710-2267.

 For more information about Palisades State Park, visit the South Dakota Game, Fish and Parks website.

About Author

Lisa Koch

Lisa Koch is a Sioux Falls, SD native. She earned her degree in Journalism - Advertising from South Dakota State University and currently works in marketing for a South Dakota-based technology company. Lisa has a passion for both graphic design and the written word. When she's not obsessing over ampersands, Lisa enjoys singing at church, performing with the local community theater, and playing a mean game of cribbage.

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