China Gulch Road

Hill City, South Dakota (Pennington County)

Last Updated: 12/15/2021
4 / 5 ( 1 reviews )
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Typically Open: 05/15 - 12/15
Length: 12.75 miles
Highest Elevation: 5716 feet
Duration: About 1 hour, 30 minutes
Shape of Trail: Straight Through
Best Direction to Travel: N/A
Nearest Town: Hill City
Nearest Town w/ Services: Hill City
Official Road Name: 249
Management Agency: Black Hills National Forest
District: Mystic Ranger District


Highlight: China Gulch Road
The beauty of the Black Hills National Forest is on display as you travel along China Gulch Road. The road begins in the China Gulch and ends as it proceeds through the more rugged and popular Nugget Gulch. This easy forested road displays an abundance of wildflowers and mature pine trees. Creek crossings are always a favorite feature for an off-pavement adventure and several can be found near the north end of this road.


Route Information

Technical Rating

( EASY )

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1. China Gulch Trailhead (0 mi)
China Culch Road begins a mile east of Hill City, SD. The crushed granite surface makes for a smooth ride at the trail's beginning. China Gulch road is open year-round between the trailhead and Waypoint 7.

Directions to Trailhead

Starting Point: Hill City, SD

Take US Highway 385 west from the edge of Hill City for 1 mile. China Gulch Road heads north (left) and is well marked with a road sign.


Not allowed

Trail Reviews (3)

Questions & Answers (0)

Writer Information

Tim Palmer

Mapping Crew - Colorado

Tim lives and works in Northern Colorado. He has owned and driven 4X4 vehicles his entire adult life including Jeeps, pick ups, ATVs and UTVs. After high school, Tim's first 4X4 was a 47 Willy's CJ-2A with a flat 4 and a 6-volt electrical system. Typically wheeling in Northern Colorado or Southern Wyoming, Tim loves being in the mountains and the back country. Because of a desire to enjoy and promote responsible off-roading and to keep it available for the future, he belongs to a local 4X4 off-road club. Being part of the community furthers that goal as well. A love for off-road adventures, camping, fishing, and hunting keeps Tim away from pavement and always exploring. While his wife likes the comfort of a Jeep Grand Cherokee, Tim prefers the ruggedness of the Jeep Wrangler. Although most off-road time is spent in Colorado and Wyoming, an occasional trip to the Moab area is common. Tim will spend the summer going topless and enjoying the value of the great outdoors. Amateur Radio Technician license call sign: ke0npg
For individual use only, not to be shared.