Located on the banks of Rapid Creek in the northern Black Hills is the old gold mining town of Rochford. Not typical of a Western town, Rochford had very little violence, unlike the wild and woolly Lead and Deadwood just 21 miles to the north.
Rochford was founded in February 1877 by R.B. Hughes and M.D. Rochford. In March 1877, a mining district was established. By December 1878, Rochford had 200 houses, a population of 500, a solid block of stores with wooden, canopied sidewalks, a couple of doctors and a good school. By 1900 only a post office and 48 residents remained.
Today, "downtown" Rochford consists of the historic Moonshine Gulch Saloon and the Rochford Mall/antique shop. Down the road is the Rochford Community Hall/Fire Station. Several other historic buildings remain standing but have deteriorated over the years.
Site Camping and Back Country Camping
Black Hills National Forest hosts several campgrounds near Rochford; campgrounds have a daily rate charge, but some are free. Back country camping, or "dispersed camping" is allowed on most Forest Service land away from developed reservoirs and campgrounds. Maximum stay for dispersed camping is 14 days in any 60-day period. Check out the Black Hills National Forest website for camping details.