Weekend fire damages historic Black Hills lodge

December 20, 2021

CUSTER, S.D. (AP) — Authorities say numerous fire departments worked through the night to put out a fire at an 85-year-old lodge in the Black Hills of South Dakota.

Two firefighters received minor injuries in the blaze at Sylvan Lake Lodge in Custer State Park.

The Custer Volunteer Fire Department said no guests of the multi-story hotel were hurt.

Firefighters discovered a “free burning fire” when they arrived at the lodge Saturday night, with heavy smoke and flames extending to the roof. Authorities say freezing temperatures, narrow roads covered with ice and snow, and darkness added to the difficulty of dealing with the blaze.

The stone-and-timber lodge was built in 1937, funded in part through Depression-era New Deal programs. A wing was added in 1991.