Description - Glaciers created this narrow strip of rolling hills and forest that is part of the geological formation called the Coteau des Prairie, which extends along the eastern boundary of South Dakota. At its highest point, the Coteau rises to more than 2,000 feet above sea level. Artifacts and burial mounds found near the park indicate that a Woodland Indian Culture inhabited this region between 300 B.C. and 900 A.D. The area's unique dark forest, amidst a vast open prairie, has prompted many recent legends, including of buried gold, robbers' hideouts and horse thieves.
- A quiet, shady campground draws thousands of campers each year to Newton Hills. Campers can stay in the campground, or in one of five camping cabins. Also available is the park's Rent-A-Camper. For $65 a night, campers can stay in a camper complete with air-conditioning, fridge and stove.
After a day on the trail, horseback riders can head for the park's equestrian camp. The trail camp provides facilities for both day and overnight park users, which include vault toilets, water, large parking areas and day and overnight horse corrals.
If you are planning a family get-together, the park has 20' x 20' and 20' x 40' canopy tents available for rent. Please contact the park office for price/details.
If you're interested in bird-watching, Newton Hills is definitely the place to be. More than 200 species of birds visit the area each year. White-tailed deer, marmots, rabbits, red and gray fox and squirrels are also found within the park. Wild Merriam turkeys have been transplanted into the park and are often seen during walks or drives.
Hunting is allowed within the park during designated seasons, but uncased bows and firearms are not allowed within the park's campgrounds.
Newton Hills hosts numerous folk music concerts in conjunction with the Friends of Traditional Music. One of the most popular concerts, the Sioux River Folk Festival, is held annually on the first weekend in August.
Recreation - Basketball court. Canoeing on the Big Sioux River. Six-mile multi-use trail through dense oak and basswood forest. Woodland Trail is listed in the registry of National Recreation Trails. Hiking, biking, horseback riding and cross-country skiing. Warming shelter. Horseshoe pits. Five picnic shelters. Playground equipment. Volleyball court. Game/equipment checkout.
Nature Observation: Arboretum trail. Look-out tower. Bird watching area.
Swimming/Beaches: Swimming beach at Lake Lakota, southeast corner of the park. No lifeguard on duty. Swim at your own risk.
Fishing/Boating: Boat ramp on Lake Lakota, southeast corner of the park. Boating restriction: no wake. Bass, catfish, panfish, perch. License required.
Located 6 miles south of Canton off County 135