South Dakota Highway 44

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Highway 44 marker

Highway 44

Route (in red) of SD 44
Route information
Defined by SDCL §31-4-164
Maintained by SDDOT
Length: 379.022 mi[1][2][3] (609.977 km)
Major junctions
West end: US 385 near Rapid City
  I-190 in Rapid City
US 16 in Rapid City
US 83 near White River
US 183 near Witten
US 18 near Jordan Junction
US 281 near Corsica
East end: I-29 near Worthing
Highway system
South Dakota Highways

South Dakota Highway 44 (SD 44) is a state highway in southern South Dakota that runs from U.S. Route 385 (US 385) west of Rapid City to Interstate 29 (I-29) south of Sioux Falls. It is just more than 379 miles (610 km) long.

Route description[edit]

SD 44 begins at a junction with US 385 and heads along a curvy road in a general southeasterly direction through the Black Hills National Forest. It curves to the east and leaves the forest, then bends back to the southeast and clips the northeastern corner of the forest before leaving it permanently and entering Rapid City, where it is known as Jackson Boulevard. In the western outskirts of Rapid City, the highway curves to the northeast and passes north of Canyon Lake before crossing Rapid Creek. The road passes near several city parks before turning due north onto Mountain View Road and crossing Main Street, which holds the Interstate 90 Business (I-90 Bus.) designation. A block north of here, SD 44 turns east onto Omaha Street and splits into a four-lane highway. It continues in that direction and intersects the southern terminus of I-190, as well as US 16.[4]

SD 44 and US 16 trek southeast for a short distance before US 16 splits off onto Mt Rushmore Road to the south and SD 44 continues heading southeast along Omaha Street. It crosses the Dakota, Minnesota and Eastern Railroad[5] and then intersects I-90 Bus. again. East of this intersection, SD 44 is reduced to two lanes. It crosses Rapid Creek again, then turns southeast and shares a folded diamond interchange with US 16 Truck and SD 79. Southeast of here, the highway leaves Rapid City and enters unincorporated Rapid Valley. The road parallels a railroad owned by the state of South Dakota as it leaves Rapid Valley and passes just south of the Rapid City Regional Airport.[4]

After departing from the Rapid City area, SD 44 continues southeast and heads through the unincorporated community of Caputa. It crosses Rapid Creek a third and final time, and then curves to the south and crosses the Cheyenne River. South of the river, SD 44 enters Badlands National Park and bends to the east. The road continues east through the hills and plateaus of the Badlands, leaving Pennington County and entering Jackson County in the process. East of the county line, the highway bends to the northeast and enters Interior, where it meets the southern terminus of SD 377. SD 44 then leaves Interior and turns back to the east, and then to the south, leaving Badlands National Park and entering the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation by crossing the White River.[4]

The highway continues due south through the reservation and then turns easterly. It curves to the north and goes through Wanblee before turning back to the east and intersecting SD 73. SD 44 treks east through rolling hills before crossing into Mellette County and leaving the reservation. Just east of the county line, the highway meets SD 63. It continues running east and crosses the Little White River before intersecting US 83 on the western edge of the city of White River, the county seat of Mellette County. The two highways run south for about two miles (3.2 km) before SD 44 splits off to the east.[4]

East of US 83, SD 44 runs southeast through more rolling hills and journeys through Wood. East of Wood, the highway meets SD 53, and it and SD 53 run east, dipping southeast and crossing into Tripp County. In Tripp County, the highways turn south and then back to the east, forming the northern limit of Witten. East of Witten, SD 44 and SD 53 intersect US 183, and the three routes run south for about four miles (6.4 km) before meeting US 18. At this intersection, SD 53 splits to the west, while SD 44 turns east with US 18 and US 183.[4]

The three routes run east toward Winner and enter the city from the northwest. In Winner, SD 44 breaks off from US 18 and US 183 and goes east, leaving the city. The road intersects SD 49 before leaving Tripp County for Douglas County. Just east of the county line lies SD 47, which SD 44 intersects and then heads farther east. The road starts to become more winding and hilly as it nears the Missouri River and Lake Francis Case. It intersects SD 1806 and then curves to the northeast and crosses the river into Charles Mix County.[4]

East of the Missouri River, SD 44 is a much flatter road. It meets SD 50 and heads east concurrent with the route. About two miles (3.2 km) east of this intersection, the highways meet SD 1804, then continue east toward Platte. In Platte, they meet the southern terminus of SD 45. After leaving the city, SD 44 and SD 50 run together until the Douglas county line, where SD 50 turns south while SD 44 continues east into Douglas County.[4]

SD 44 overlaps SD 19 in Parker

In Douglas County, SD 44 heads east for about 15 miles (24 km) before it arrives at a junction with US 281 south of Corsica. It and US 281 run concurrent to the east for about three miles (4.8 km) before US 281 curves to the south and leaves SD 44, which runs east for about 12 miles (19 km) before entering Hutchinson County. Then, SD 44 reaches Parkston and intersects SD 37.[4]

East of SD 37, SD 44 continues east, then curves slightly to the north and crosses the James River. East of the river, the highway crosses US 81 about one mile (1.6 km) before crossing into Turner County. In Turner County, SD 44 crosses the BNSF Railway[5] and then the west fork of the Vermillion River. The route enters Parker and crosses the river again, then meets SD 19.[4]

SD 44 and SD 19 run southeast together and leave Parker, then cross the BNSF Railway again. Later, SD 19 continues to run south and SD 44 turns to the east and passes over the east fork of the Vermillion River. Farther to the east, the highway enters Chancellor, where it bends in a southeasterly direction. It continues in this direction until it reaches the Lincoln county line, where it curves farther to the southeast toward Lennox.[4]

The route enters the city and turns to the east toward a junction with the southern terminus SD 17. At the SD 17 intersection, SD 44 turns due south and leaves Lennox. It treks in this direction for about one mile (1.6 km) before turning to the east. The highway runs east through rural Lincoln County for about 4.5 miles (7.2 km) before coming to its eastern terminus, a diamond interchange at I-29.[4]

Major intersections[edit]

County Location Mile[1][2][3] km Destinations Notes
Pennington   0.000 0.000 US 385 Western terminus
Rapid City 16.982 27.330 I-90 Bus. (West Main Street)
18.180 29.258 I-190 north / US 16 west Southern terminus of I-190, western end of US 16 concurrency
18.378 29.577 US 16 east (Mt Rushmore Road) Eastern end of US 16 concurrency
18.912 30.436 I-90 Bus. (East Boulevard)
21.835–
22.091
35.140–
35.552

US 16 Truck / SD 79
Folded diamond interchange
Jackson Interior 91.505 147.263 SD 377 north Southern terminus of SD 377
  127.270 204.821 SD 73
Mellette   143.480 230.909 SD 63
White River 166.469 267.906 US 83 north Northern end of US 83 concurrency
  168.780 271.625 US 83 south Southern end of US 83 concurrency
  188.158 302.811 SD 53 north Western end of SD 53 concurrency
Tripp   207.897 334.578 US 183 north Western end of US 183 concurrency
  211.890 341.004 US 18 west / SD 53 south Western end of US 18 concurrency, eastern end of SD 53 concurrency
Winner 221.206 355.997 US 18 east / US 183 south Eastern end of US 18/US 183 concurrency
  229.245 368.934 SD 49
Gregory   241.599 388.816 SD 47
  255.017 410.410 SD 1806 south
Charles Mix   262.892 423.084 SD 50 west Western end of SD 50 concurrency
  264.980 426.444 SD 1804 south
Platte 272.976 439.312 SD 45 north Southern terminus of SD 45
  279.905 450.463 SD 50 east Eastern end of SD 50 concurrency
Douglas   295.000 474.756 US 281 north Western end of US 281 concurrency
  297.981 479.554 US 281 south Eastern end of US 281 concurrency
Hutchinson Parkston 315.740 508.134 SD 37
  345.035 555.280 US 81
Turner Parker 360.082 579.496 SD 19 north Western end of SD 19 concurrency
  362.977 584.155 SD 19 south Eastern end of SD 19 concurrency
Lincoln Lennox 373.468 601.038 SD 17 north Southern terminus of SD 17
  378.914–
379.022
609.803–
609.977
I-29 – Sioux Falls, Sioux City, IA Eastern terminus
1.000 mi = 1.609 km; 1.000 km = 0.621 mi

References[edit]

Route map: Google / Bing