Sidney to Deadwood Trail

Explore the Famous Sidney to Deadwood Trail

In 1874, a military expedition led by George Armstrong Custer discovered gold in the Black Hills. Though a treaty reserved the Black Hills for the Sioux Indians, the Army stopped enforcing it. Interlopers trespassed by the thousands and soon a major gold rush was under way. It led to a tragic war between the Sioux tribe and the United States, a war in which Custer himself was famously killed during the Battle of the Little Bighorn. 

For would-be gold miners, Sidney became a popular jumping-off place, leaving behind the ease of railroad travel and heading overland by horse, oxen, mule and wagon up the 267-mile Sidney-to-Deadwood Trail. Through the early 1880s, the trail carried most of the gold rush traffic, including rich gold shipments from the Black Hills in South Dakota. 

On Highway 30 west of town, a historical marker indicates where trail ruts are still visible across from the Union Pacific tracks. Highway 30 is also part of the old Lincoln Highway, which in the 1920s became the first paved coast-to-coast auto route. 

For more information about Sidney, contact the Cheyenne County Visitors Committee at (866) 545-4030 or visit