Cook Lake Rec Area

Black Hills National Forest

Situated in a heavily forested area adjacent to Cook Lake, this campground is a peaceful setting for guests seeking recreation and relaxation in the Black Hills National Forest in Wyoming. Some sites in the campground are widely spaced and open up to views overlooking the lake, and others sit snugly along a hillside. Separation, rather than vegetation, provide visitors with a sense of privacy. Tall mature trees and grass underbrush give the campground a groomed character.

The Cook Lake Recreation Area has sites able to accommodate tents, trailers, and RVs. The campground is equipped with picnic tables, campfire rings, vault toilets, and drinking water; however, electrical hook-ups are not available. There is also an accessible pier and picnic area as well as walk in access to the lake for small boats (non motorized).

Need to Know

Natural Features

Located in western South Dakota and northeastern Wyoming, Black Hills National Forest encompasses nearly 1.25 million acres of rugged rock formations, canyons and gulches, open grassland parks, tumbling streams, deep blue lakes, and unique caves. Derived from the Lakota language, the words "Paha Sapa," meaning "hills that are black," honor the dark, pine-covered hills rising several thousand feet above the surrounding prairie. Wildlife in the area abounds. Bighorn sheep navigate mountainous terrain, while elk, deer and pronghorn gather in forests and prairies. Bald eagles, hawks, osprey, peregrine falcon, and hundreds of other bird species can be found in the forest, especially along streams, lakes and rivers. Mountain lions, although rarely seen, also call this area home.

Nearby Attractions

A hike to Warren Peak Lookout Tower makes a scenic day trip for guests.

Devils Tower National Monument is also a great location to visit. Established as the first United States National Monument on September 24, 1906, by President Theodore Roosevelt, this unique geological formation is valued for its natural, cultural, and recreational significance.

Recreation

The forest offers accessible recreation for all ages. Visitors can take advantage of opportunities for hiking, fishing, horseback riding, mountain biking, and riding off-highway vehicles (OHVs) on moderate terrain. Approximately 4 miles of hiking and bicycling trails are available at the recreation area. Adjacent to the campground is Cook Lake, an ideal spot for fishing and boating. The lake supports populations of rainbow and brown trout, a variety of sunfish, and catfish. The Cook Lake Trail, along with Loop A, has been closed due to a recent landslide. However there are still plenty of opportunities for outdoor recreation of all types in the area.

Changes & Cancellations

No refunds will be given for weather or related events.

Contact Information

Mailing Address

Forest Recreation Management, Inc P.O. Box 1168 Hill City SD 57745

Phone Number

For campground inquiries, please call: (307)283-1361

Rental Options

Learn more about gear rental options for your trip

Driving Directions

Interstate I-90 to exit 199 (Aladdin). North on Rt 111 for 4 miles, left on Farrall Road (Rt 843) for 10 miles to Cook Lake.

OR

From Sundance, WY, take US 14 west or exit 185 off Interstate 90 to US 14 west, for 1.4 miles to Cook Lake Recreation Area sign at Forest Route 838. Turn right onto FR 838 and go 12.9 miles to FR 843. Turn right and go 5.4 miles to another Cook Lake Recreation Area sign on FR 842. Turn left and go 1.1 miles to campground.

Available Campsites