The Home of the Bison: An Ethnographic and Ethnohistorical Study of Traditional Cultural Affiliations to Wind Cave National Park provides readers with insight into how its lands and resources of the park have dynamically changed in the course of a history with different waves of human occupation.
Historic Context Report for Potential Linear Historic Road Corridor Along South Dakota (SD) 87 in Wind Cave National Park - This study discusses the scenic stretch of South Dakota Highway 87 in the southern Black Hills. The road is a central focus of recreation and interpretation within the park. To read more about the history and protection of this historic road click on the link above.
Rankin Ridge Lookout Tower, Wind Cave National Park Assessment of Qualification for Listing on National Register of Historic Places - The Rankin Ridge Fire Tower is located in the northwestern portion of Wind Cave National Park. Situated at an elevation of 5,013 feet, the highest point in the national park, the tower provides a panoramic view of southeastern Black Hills and the surrounding Great Plains. It was constructed in 1956 and remained in regular use during fire seasons until 1998. Currently, the tower is only used sporadically to look for fires or to monitor severe weather conditions." The Rankin Ridge area became part of the national park on August 1946 when more than 16,000 acres of the former Custer Recreation Demonstration Area (RDA) were added to Wind Cave National Park. It was named after Wind Cave's first superintendent: William A. Rankin.
Did You Know?
Fire is an important factor in protecting the prairie. Historically, fires burned across the prairie every 4 to 7 years. Fires burn the small trees that would otherwise march across the prairie and turn the grasslands to forest.