Palisades State Park
This go-to spot for climbers aiming to improve their scaling and rappelling techniques features rock formations of pink Sioux Quartzite, which only exist in a couple of Midwestern states. Palisades offers a good mix of both face and crack climbs, however bolting isn’t allowed in the quartzite formations, so a little bit of extra planning is required. Because of other considerations like this and the popularity of rock climbing in the park, South Dakota’s park service published this quick and easy guide that lays out all the basics you’ll need to know before climbing in Palisades.
Palisades is an excellent location for new climbers, casual climbers or trad enthusiasts. Over 100 routes are intended to be top-roped and there are close to 90 trad lines in the mix. Unlike most crags, the climbs here trend towards the lower grades, 5.6–5.9, so it's a great place to really dial in your skills and technique without pushing it too hard.
Also, because it’s a state park, it offers a variety of other outdoor activities like well-maintained camping space, cabins, shower facilities and playground sets. If you want to make a weekend (or a week) out of a rock climbing trip, this is the place to do it.
Lastly, if you’re looking for a truly local climbing experience, Palisades is a good choice. The park is just a short drive from Sioux Falls and the proximity to one of the state’s largest cities also makes it a great choice if you want to rock climb during the day and enjoy the amenities of city life in the evening.