Welcome to Yak Ridge Cabins and Farmstead, an authentic taste of midwestern country life in heart of the Black Hills of South Dakota.
The farmstead is also rich in history, located on the west central edge of Eagle Mountain Ranch. The original Ranch was established by early settlers and includes Eagle Mountain, elevation 5,267, located to the east of Yak Ridge and recognizable by its rocky outcropping peak. Bald Eagles have historically nested in the area and are often seen soaring the skies. During Prohibition, Yak Ridge’s corner of the Ranch was known as Whiskey Gulch. Remnants of old bootlegger roads and the spring that cooled the whiskey still can be found on Forest Service property adjacent to Yak Ridge.
The second component of Yak Ridge is the trio of guest cabins open year-round for visitors to the area. Each cabin has its own unique appeal and is situated in the heart of the Hills, perfect for visiting local attractions. Guests can take short day trips to Mount Rushmore, Crazy Horse, Custer State Park, Sheridan Lake, Pactola Reservoir, Mickelson Trail, 1880 Train, Bear Country, Reptile Gardens, caves, museums, and many other area must-see locations.
Yak Ridge farmstead is a unique collection of agricultural activities that utilize and complement the natural landscape. Home to honey bees, chickens, and even a small herd of Himalayan yaks, the farmstead is brimming with life. Visitors can see firsthand how the plants, animals, and human activity form a symbiotic relationship and lend themselves to a sustainable way of life.
In addition to sightseeing and other adventures in the Black Hills, cabin guests can enjoy peace and tranquility right from their cabin’s front porch. Enjoy beautiful mountain and meadow views, and even observe the region’s wildlife throughout the ten-acre property. Frequent guests include deer, song birds, turkeys, hawks, marmots, and chipmunks. Occasionally, bald eagles, elk, coyotes, owls, and fox also visit the property. Yak Ridge is located at an elevation of 5,000 feet, providing for cool evenings and star-studded skies.
Yak Ridge founders and owners, Jim and Julie Smoragiewicz acquired this unique property in 2014. They chose to name it Yak Ridge in honor of their small yak herd and for the hillside’s resemblance to the ridge on the back of a yak. Yak Ridge consists of two harmonious components – the farmstead and the cabins – that together allow visitors to immerse themselves in a rich midwestern country experience.
Q: Is Yak Ridge open for visitors year-round?
A: Yes! We encourage families, couples, and individuals to visit all seasons of the year. Our unique location and natural landscape allow for different experiences each time you visit; enjoy the quiet and peaceful winter snows, breathtaking fall foliage, vibrant summer wildflowers, and abundant new life in the springtime.
Q: My family has small children. Is Yak Ridge enjoyable for all ages?
A: Yes, our cabin facilities and farmstead are perfect for young children, teens, and adults. Families can enjoy an array of games, books, and movies right inside the cabins, or venture outside to explore the beautiful property, or schedule a tour of the farmstead.
Q: My spouse and I just want to relax. Do your cabins include all the modern amenities we would find in a typical hotel experience?
A: Yes, plus more! You will have a cabin completely furnished and stocked with the dishes, cooking utensils, towels, linens, and other items you need. We take great care in providing an environment that is tranquil and private while also offering opportunities and experiences that traditional accommodations cannot.
Q: My family plans on visiting multiple attractions throughout the Black Hills during our stay. Is Yak Ridge a good central location to save on fuel and time?
A: Yes! Our property is ideal for families and tourists. We are located just five miles from Mt. Rushmore, plus a short drive from Rapid City’s excellent downtown restaurants and shopping, Hill City’s vibrant arts and local culture scene, a quick trip to Sturgis, home of the legendary Sturgis Motorcycle Rally, and centrally located to all the major attractions in the Black Hills.
Q: Can we bring our family dog to Yak Ridge?
A: Unfortunatley no. We love dogs (and cats) but Yak Ridge is designated a pet free property.
Q: What do we need to bring to Yak Ridge?
A: Just your clothes and food. Each cabin is fully furnished and the kitchen has dishware, glassware, cookware, and even a supply of spices. All your bed, bath, and kitchen linens are also provided.
Arrival and Departure through
Rapid City Regional Airport
Travel times to / from Yak Ridge: 30 min. (driving)
Guests arriving at and departing from Rapid City Regional Airport will appreciate the convenience of the short thirty-minute commute. Rental vehicles are available in the airport terminal and shuttles regularly travel between the airport and Rapid City. If you have any questions about arriving at or departing from Yak Ridge, please contact us and we will be happy to answer your questions.
Rapid City Regional Hospital
Travel time to/from Yak Ridge: 21 min (driving)
Guests requiring emergency medical services while visiting the Black Hills have access to Rapid City Regional Hospital. Acute care services are available in HIll City and other communities throughout the Black Hills. These clinic are operated by Regional Health and other providers.