Purple flowers in a green field. Hiking trail extends from right to the center background. Colorful early evening sky beyond.

BHNF Photo

Ever wonder what the Black Hills look like under the faint silvery light of the full moon? Find out with Black Hills National Forest’s Moon Walk hiking program series! This summer, join BHNF and BHPFA for a series of guided hikes revealing the natural beauty and cultural history of the Black Hills in a whole new light.

Discover the Magic of Moon Walks

Moon Walks aren’t your average ranger-guided hikes. They’re immersive experiences combining the tranquility of a nighttime hike with educational insights about the Black Hills. Each walk features a different theme, from local wildlife to geological formations, so Moon Walk is a unique adventure.

Why Join a Moon Walk?

The Black Hills National Forest is rich with natural wonders and historical stories. So Moon Walks engage both your curiosity and your sense of adventure! Whether you’re interested in learning about the area’s flora and fauna or its cultural significance, there’s something for everyone. Plus, this year we added a special Moon “Drive” along the Spearfish Canyon Scenic Byway, making the experience even more memorable (and pleasant) for those with mobility concerns.

2024 Moon Walk Schedule (Each program begins at 7 pm)

Hazy pale orange full moon with clouds on a gray sky over a silhouette of a hillside

BHNF Photo / B. Doten

  • June 22: “Please… Do Not Feed the Wildlife” with Ruben Mares.
    Start at the Spearfish Canyon Public Parking Area and learn about local wildlife during a scenic drive through the canyon.
  • July 20: “Explore the Dark Skies at Jewel Cave” with Joey Roberts and Christine Longenecker.
    Enjoy an evening under one of the darkest skies in the Black Hills at Jewel Cave National Monument.
  • August 17: “Wild for Prescribed Fire and Smokey Bear!” with Chris Stover.
    Celebrate Smokey Bear’s 80th birthday and learn about the benefits of prescribed fire at the Victoria Prescribed Fire site.
  • September 14: “Are Our Hills ‘Slip-Sliding Away?'” with Karl Emanuel.
    Discover the fascinating geology of Cook Lake and learn about the area’s continuous monitoring efforts.

How to Prepare

Moon Walks are Saturday nights closest to the full moon in June, July, August, and September. They begin at 7 pm and last about two hours. Dress in layers, wear sturdy shoes, and bring a light jacket. Some routes may be challenging for those with mobility concerns, so plan accordingly. If the weather looks iffy, check our social media for any updates on cancellations.

Colorful metal lapel pin lying on a silvery metal tabletop. Text on pin in arch shape reads

Limited Edition Pins For Sale $5 Cash at Moon Walk Events

Stay Informed and Get Involved

Follow Black Hills National Forest on social media and bookmark their website to stay updated on future events and activities. Your participation in these Moon Walks and purchases of the special collectors edition pins ($5, cash only) at the event help support the important work of the Black Hills Parks and Forests Association, from conservation efforts to educational programs.

So, are you ready to see the Black Hills in a whole new light? Join us for a Moon Walk and experience the magic of nature at night. We can’t wait to see you there!