2024 State Game Lodge Summer Blast now live! Stay dates: July 26 - October 19

Rock spires span the horizon
Back to News

2023 Buffalo Roundup & Arts Festival

Events & Brunches   |  
Buffalo Roundup

Feel the Earth Shake

As the hooves of more than 1,300 American buffalo thunder through the valley. At the annual Buffalo Roundup, cowboys and cowgirls on horseback spur them over the ridge, down the hill and into corrals for sorting. The entire Custer State herd passes by only a few hundred feet from your seat. After they are safely in the corrals, you can watch as the herd is sorted, branded, tested, and treated.

How to Plan for the Roundup

All you have to do is show up and enjoy, but there is some nice-to-know information. Breakfast and lunch is available to purchase at the event but there are no viewing bleachers, so plan to get in line early if front-row viewing is important to you. Also, the forecast that time of year could vary, and you watch from the middle of a field, so dressing comfortably in layers is encouraged.

Future dates, the weekend schedule and FAQ is posted here, as well as with the South Dakota Game, Fish & Parks.

Learn More
Herd of buffalo in a field

Where to Go

You will want to determine which viewing area you will be going to prior to Friday morning. All vehicles will depart the way they entered.

North Parking and Viewing
Head south from the Visitor Center on Wildlife Loop Road. (See green path on map.)

South Parking and Viewing
Head to Blue Bell Lodge and go east on Wildlife Loop Road. (See red path on map.)

Parking lots open at 6:15am and close at 9:00am.

2023 Brochure
Map of buffalo round up event

Where to Stay for the Roundup

Lodging at Custer State Park Resort can be tough to come by for the Roundup. Visitors are encouraged to reserve well in advance; but if you aren't that far ahead of the game, don't fret. Some lodging options can often open up last-minute (think less than a month out) so it is always worth checking.

Check Availability
Drone shot of Custer State Park Resort

Support the Wildlife

It is worth mentioning that for 2023, the SD Parks & Wildlife Foundation is raffling off a pretty nice lodging package. The lucky winner will receive a weekend to remember in Custer State Park for the 2023 Buffalo Roundup, including three (3) nights in a newly-updated resort cabin at the Game Lodge, a Buffalo Safari & Chuckwagon Cookout for up to four (4), dinner each night, and a souvenir basket, including a transferrable Park Pass.

Learn more about the Parks & Wildlife Foundation and how your stay with us supports their mission.

Donate Today
Elk grazing during sunrise in grass field
If you are inquiring about a specific lodge, please select.