A Land of Rich Natural SplendorRising darkly from the surrounding plains like an island emerging out of a restless sea, the Black Hills inspire a sense of otherworldly mystery. Natural and supernatural seem to intermingle here: Dim pine glades come alive with dancing shadows; angry-sounding peals of thunder echo off gracefully crumbling canyon walls; rocky streams murmur as if sharing secrets; winds whistle through sky-piercing granite spires and sigh from the sunless depths of immense caverns.
To the Lakota Sioux and Cheyenne, this land was holy—a sacred place of solitude, introspection and prayer—but its ruggedness, despite the eerie beauty, did not encourage long-term settlement. Many avoided the area entirely as the domain of the gods.
The Lakota name Paha Sapa (Black Mountains) is easy to explain: Seen from a distance, thick spruce and ponderosa pine forests create an undulating, dusky blanket that contrasts sharply with the light greens and yellows of encircling prairie grasses.
Black Hills, SD
AAA’s in-person hotel evaluations are unscheduled to ensure the inspector has an experience similar to that of members. To pass inspection, all hotels must meet the same rigorous standards for cleanliness, comfort and hospitality. These hotels receive a AAA Diamond designation that tells members what type of experience to expect.