Home of the Homestake Mining Company, our small mountain town is full of unique attractions and experiences. Whether you’re catching a show at the Historic Homestake Opera House, discovering history at the Black Hills Mining Museum or taking a guided tour, you’ll see Lead is a great mountain community that is growing rapidly with innovative, creative entrepreneurs. Step into the Sanford Lab Homestake Visitor Center to see where history and science meet. Take a tour of the Sanford Lab or visit the gift show featuring local art and beautiful Black Hills Gold.
As you plan your visit don’t forget these awesome things to see and do!
Our favorite Lead attractions:
- Sanford Lab Homestake Visitor Center:The Sanford Lab Homestake Visitor Center serves as the gateway to the City of Lead, South Dakota. People from around the world visit Lead and one of the first stops is the Visitor Center where they can visit an 8,000-square-foot exhibit hall to learn more about the history of Lead and the science taking place deep underground at the Sanford Underground Research Facility (SURF). To learn more about how to book bus tours and rentals, please call us at 605-584-3110. Click here to learn about K12 education offerings. Winter hours for the facility will run October 1st - April 30th 9am to 4pm Monday through Saturday. Closed Sundays.
- Black Hills Mining Museum: Take a guided walk back in time to see how gold mining evolved, and what innovative mining techniques helped Homestake produce over 40 million ounces of gold in Lead. Built by miners, this is a one of a kind experience your group will never forget. Gold panning is also available (with additional charge for this special activity). (605) 584-1605
- Homestake Opera House: This 100-year-old performing arts venue hosts theatre, concerts, movies, private and group tours, weddings and presentations year-round while in restoration. Built in 1914 by the Homestake Gold Mine, it boasted a swimming pool, library, 1000-seat theater, billiard hall, bowling alley, social hall, game rooms and smoking lounge, surviving a theater fire in 1984. Visit their brand new interpretive center for the whole story and an exclusive look behind the curtain!
- Lead-Deadwood Arts Center: Not only does the Lead-Deadwood Arts Center promotes local arts and artists, it also brings quality creative classes and artistic activities, operates a beautiful art gallery and gift shop and provides quality, custom framing with the largest frame selection in the area! Stop by their beautiful space, located at 309 W Main Street in Lead. (605) 584-1461
- Retail & Shopping on Main Street: Enjoy eclectic shops offering everything from vintage furniture, to apparel, sporting goods, gifts, crystals, and handmade jewelry. Call the Lead Area Chamber of Commerce for more information: (605)584-1100
- Black Hills Discovery Tours: Provides quality and relaxing fully narrated, day long adventures in air-conditioned comfort. Learn Black Hills history, legends and stories. Tours run year around. (605)920-1020
Some of our favorite recreational attractions:
- George S. Mickelson Trail: A great place for biking, skiing, horseback riding, or walking. This trail is 109 miles long and takes one through the entire Black Hills from Lead to Edgemont. It's great for adventurers of any age. For more information call the Black Hills Trail Office at (605) 584-3896.
- Spearfish Canyon: Designated a National Scenic Byway. It is located on Highway 14A and twists through the 19 mile gorge. The canyon offers 3 water falls, hiking, biking, fly fishing, bird watching, snowmobiling and snow shoeing! For the outdoors person, all this is only a 15 minute drive from Lead!
- Terry Peak: With a summit at 7,100 feet, Terry Peak offers the highest lift service between the Rocky Mountains and the Alps. Reaching this elevation means the mountain can get up to three times as much snow as anywhere else in the region. A vertical rise of 1,100 feet with 30 trails and one Terrain Park, provides plenty of non-stop action and unlimited adventure. In the event of a lean Winter, Terry Peak has snowmaking equipment that can blanket approximately 60% of the mountain with man-made powder, ensuring the conditions are great all season long. Rentals, lessons and lodges offer some of the best winter sports around!
- Lead Country Club: Established in 1922, Lead Country Club is one of the oldest courses in Western South Dakota. Nestled in the woods and rolling hills, this course will challenge even the most gifted player. Don't be long, stay below the hole, play a little more break than you read and you will do just fine. After your round enjoy a great burger at our clubhouse, and have a drink from our full bar. (605)584-1852
Some of our favorite attractions in our sister town:
- Deadwood: This Wild West Town allows you to visit days gone by. This town has done a fabulous job on restoring the Historic Main Street. Deadwood is just 3 miles from Lead. While in Deadwood check out the Adams Museum and House, Mt. Moriah where Wild Bill and Calamity Jane are buried. For more information on Deadwood and what they have to offer contact the Deadwood Area Chamber of Commerce at (605) 578-1876.
- The Days of '76 Museum: Located in Deadwood, the museum features Old West and Native American artifacts and over 60 historic horse-drawn carriages, including the original Deadwood Stage.
- The Adams Museum and House: The Adams House, built in 1892, is an elegant Victorian mansion, which became a museum following a detailed restoration. The Adam House Museum tells the story of two 19th century families, and reveals a cultured lifestyle not commonly associated with the American West. The Adams Museum is located in downtown Deadwood and features many artifacts and information about Deadwood's rip roaring history. For more information and tour times, call the Adams Museum at (605) 578-1714.
- Broken Boot Gold Mine: Step into the Black Hills best underground mine tour and return to a time when the powerful punch of a miner’s pick and the roaring boom of another dynamite blast signaled the ongoing search for the richest veins of gold on Earth. (Seasonal) 605-578-9997
Some of our favorite attractions in the Southern Black Hills:
- Mt. Rushmore National Monument: Carved into the Black Hills of South Dakota are the iconic faces of four former presidents. Gutzon Borglum designed the sculpture. Though he passed away before its completion, over 400 workers helped bring his vision to life. Today visitors come to appreciate this colossal man-made creation, learn about the design and construction process, appreciate its significance as a symbol of the American history, and to learn about the natural and cultural history of the Black Hills region. (Approximately 50 miles South on Hwy 385 from Lead.)
- Crazy Horse Memorial: This is the world’s largest mountain carving in progress, between Custer & Hill City on Hwy 16/385, The Crazy Horse Memorial Hwy. Sculptor Korczak Ziolkowski & Lakota Chief Henry Standing Bear officially started Crazy Horse Memorial June 3, 1948. The Memorial's mission is to honor the culture, tradition & living heritage of North American Indians. The Foundation demonstrates its commitment to this endeavor by continuing the progress on the world’s largest sculptural undertaking by carving a memorial of Lakota leader Crazy Horse; by providing educational and cultural programming; by acting as a repository for American Indian artifacts, arts and crafts through the Indian Museum of North America and the Native American Educational & Cultural Center; and by establishing and operating the Indian University of North America and, when practical, a medical training center for American Indians. (Approximately 55 miles South on Hwy 385 from Lead.)
- Bear Country USA: From the comfort of your own vehicle observe black bears, elk, mountain lions, buffalo, reindeer and other wildlife in their natural environment.After you drive take a wildlife walk around our area where you can view park offspring, smaller animals and the grizzly bear. (605) 343-2290