OverviewLists of John, Mount Roosevelt ranks #89 among Black Hills summits, having a prominence of 360 feet. While not a difficult climb, hikers will find not only great views, but also get to see the historic stone tower at the summit. The stone tower provides great views of Terry Peak and Spearfish Peak to the west, Polo Peak to the north and Custer Peak to the south.
Despite its close proximity to the resort towns of Deadwood and Lead, wildlife is in abundance with deer, elk, pronghorn antelope, and a large variety of small animals and birds. As the mountain lion population continues to grow in the Black Hills, they are also seen occasionally in the area. There is a very large aspen grove on the southern slopes leading down to Deadwood and there is a small picnic area at the trailhead.
In years past, the summit was cleared of trees. But, re-growth over the last few decades has obscured some of the view from the summit. One can still get clear views of various Black Hills peaks. However, the lower view to the southwest is scarred by the remains of the old Homestake Gold Mine.
Getting There & Route to Summit
If you are traveling in from Interstate 90, you can access BHNF133 from highway 85. You can park at that intersection and hike the forest road about 3 miles until you come to the picnic area and Mount Roosevelt trailhead.
The trail route to the summit is well-maintained. At just ½ mile in length, and with a gentle grade, it makes access to the summit possible for almost everyone. There is about 150 feet in rise from the trailhead to the summit. The trail winds through aspen groves and pine forest, and past a boulder field. Part of the view south from the boulder field is quite scenic.
Red TapeSince this is all public land, there is no red tape, outside of observing campfire safety.
When To ClimbThis area is open year-around. The roads to the trailhead are not always promptly plowed, but they are maintained. Summer lightning and winter blizzards will probably be your major deterrents. For the latest weather information for this area, click here:
Mount Theodore Roosevelt - Deadwood Area Weather
Camping and Lodging Resources
Deadwood Chamber of Commerce
Deadwood Area Campgrounds
Chamber of Commerce Campground Info
National Forest Camping & Cabins