Terry Peak, the Heartlands largest ski area with a vertical drop over 1,100 feet, plans on skiing and riding through Sunday, April 4, weather permitting. It's located in the Black Hills of South Dakota, home to the tallest mountain peaks between the Rockies and the European Alps. Some of the mountain tops measure over 7,200 feet, and that is a surprise to most Midwesterners.
The ski area, located less than an hour above Rapid City, has over 30 runs - some up to two miles long - four chairlifts (includes two high-speed quads), a halfpipe and freestyle terrain park. It offers skiing and boarding for all levels. The North Side Glades appeals to expert skiers and riders, and beginners have their own area complete with a pair of triple chairlifts near the top of the mountain. In between are some of the best top-to-bottom cruising runs found mid-continent. Three-day lift tickets through the end of the season are $40 per day, per person.
Visitors can experience the history of the old West in the mountain towns of Lead and Deadwood only minutes from the Peak. These exciting towns boast historic buildings with impressive architectural detail, museums and unique shopping, dining, and numerous lodging choices.
Deadwood is designated as a National Historic Landmark and is listed on both the National and South Dakota Registers of Historic Places. Wild Bill Hickok and Calamity Jane are buried here. Gambling was legalized in 1989, which has helped to fund the renovation of the many historic buildings.
Casinos are scattered throughout the town and offer some of the best gaming between Atlantic City and Vegas. Once the slopes close, skiers and boarders head for places like Kevin Costner's Midnight Star Casino that rocks all night with gambling and live music, or they mosey on over to Miss Kitty's historic saloon with its great Chinese restaurant. The Gem, recently popularized by the HBO series Deadwood, is one of 80-some gambling spots in the mountain town.
The gaming offers a big plus for skiers and riders; low prices for lodging and dining. The discounts are designed to entice gamblers, just don't give it all back at the tables. It's the wild Midwest.