South Dakota Park Mostly Escaped 2011 River Flooding
State park officials say last year’s Missouri River flood in South Dakota will have little impact on campers to North Point Recreation Area near Pickstown this summer.
“North Point was lucky in that it escaped some of the major damage we saw upstream,” said State Parks and Recreation Director Doug Hofer. “While the park staff will continue to work on repair projects throughout the summer, campsites and major facilities should be back on line in time for summer recreation.”
As reported by The Daily Republic in Mitchell, Hofer expects all North Point campsites and comfort stations to be operational for the first official weekend of the summer camping season, referred to as open house weekend, May 18-20.
However, campers should keep in mind that full recovery will take quite a while, he said. While North Point Recreation Area and most of its facilities will be open this spring, some facilities will not be in the same condition as they were before the flood. Visitors will see the effects in eroded shorelines, patchy grass, damaged trails and fewer trees.
Throughout the summer, park visitors will have use of the sanitary dump station, fish cleaning station, swim beach change house, day use area, boat ramps and playground. New electrical pedestals will also be in place, and grass is expected to begin growing this spring.
The park lost several trees to the flooding, and Picnic Shelter No. 1 will not be available for use at all this summer. Visitors are also advised that the Spillway Lakeside Use Area below Fort Randall Dam sustained shoreline erosion and damage to roads that are scheduled for repairs by midsummer.
Hofer released the timeline now for park repairs because reservations open soon for the popular North Point campground. Reservations can be made 90 days before arrival, with reservations opening for open house weekend on Feb. 18. Memorial Day weekend reservations open Feb. 25 for a Friday, May 25, arrival.
Hofer encourages park users to check the park’s webpage and sign up for e-mail news releases at www.gfp.sd.gov to stay current on the latest information.