June 2016: Sylvan Lake, located in Custer State Park is in the Black Hills of South Dakota. Created in 1881, a dam was built across the Sunday Gulch. The original hotel was operated on the shore of the lake until it burnt down. In 1937 the hotel was rebuilt in a spot suggested by architect Frank Lloyd Wright. The hotel sits in a hillside forest of pine and spruce trees, in harmony with the beauty of the rugged landscape. This stone and timber lodge overlooks the sloping hills and the breathtaking beauty of Sylvan Lake.
The hotel, perched on the hill is in close proximity to Mount Rushmore, a 6 mile drive along what is labeled the Needles Highway (highway 87). The road although labeled a highway, is a narrow road, very twisting and winding, with a 180 degree and 270 degree hairpin turns. At one point as we overlooked the valley we passed through a rock tunnel 10 feet wide, and 10 feet high.