Recreation Opportunities in the Rapid Creek Watershed!
The Rapid Creek watershed upstream from Rapid City in the Black Hills National Forest is primarily used for recreation. Activities include hunting, fishing, bicycling, motorcycling, boating, snowmobiling, swimming, hiking, bird-watching, camping, equestrian activities, and ATV/UTV riding.
Outdoor recreation brought $2.27 billion in direct and indirect income and 48,000 jobs to South Dakota in 2017. Direct spending on hunting alone in the Black Hills is about $89 million per year.
Outdoor recreation encourages people to protect the land and water, because
This makes recreation a good match for the area’s economy, not only because recreation brings income that’s based in clean water, but also because the Rapid Creek watershed and its connected groundwater aquifers provide the water for the state’s second-largest municipality, Rapid City.
The watershed also supplies Ellsworth Air Force Base, making clean water a national security issue. And it supplies reservations, smaller communities, and agriculture along the Creek as the water flows to the Cheyenne and Missouri Rivers. What we do here has far-reaching impacts!
Everybody needs beauty as well as bread, places to play in and pray in, where nature may heal and give strength to body and soul.” - John Muir