Cleghorn Springs State Fish Hatchery

Cleghorn Springs Fish Hatchery
The Cleghorn Springs Hatchery, located on the west end of Rapid City off Jackson Blvd, raises trout and salmon which are stocked in the state's fishing waters.

The site was selected for the excellent water source. A spring provides six million gallons of water daily at a year-round temperature of 52 degrees.

Rainbow trout and Chinook salmon are the major species raised. Over two hundred fifty thousand fish, totaling 70,000 pounds, are produced annually.

Catchable trout, 11 inches long, are stocked in the small lakes, reservoirs and streams in the Black Hills. Fingerling salmon are stocked in Lake Oahe.


Fall, Winter and Spring
The visitor center is closed for the season.

The hatchery is open to visitors from 7:00am - 3:30pm Monday - Friday. Visitors may walk around the grounds and feed fish in the outside raceways.

There is no charge to visit.

Group tours of the facility can be scheduled 10 days in advance by calling 605.394.4100.

Cleghorn Springs State Fish Hatchery
4725 Jackson Blvd
Rapid City, SD  57702


Trout eggs
Eyed rainbow trout eggs that will be 11 inch fish for stocking in South Dakota waters after 12 months of rearing at the hatchery.

Trout fingerlings
Rainbow trout fingerlings in an indoor rearing tank. These trout are held until they reach approximately 7.5cm.(3"), when they are moved outside into the concrete raceways.

Trout brood stock
Rainbow trout brood stock in outdoor holding tank. These domestic strain rainbows have been at Cleghorn Hatchery since 1974.

Rainbow Trout
These rainbow trout reach "catchable" size, 28 cm(11"), in about 12 months.


Trout and salmon are not native to South Dakota. Trout were first introduced into the Black Hills in 1886 at Cleghorn Springs by two Rapid City men. They brought fish from Colorado in cream cans by horse and wagon. Since then, with the help of our hatcheries, trout have been stocked in all suitable Black Hills lakes and streams.

The state's first trout hatchery was started in 1918 but was destroyed by fire only a year later. A house in Rapid City was converted into a temporary hatchery in 1919.

Cleghorn Springs Hatchery has been in operation since 1928. The spring and later the hatchery received their names from the original homestead founded there circa 1889. The first hatchery, constructed in 1928 was comprised of a brick hatchery building at the East End of the site and about 12 miscellaneous rectangular earthen ponds. This facility was renovated to include 29-earth bottom, stone walled ponds and 7 earthen ponds.

The entire facility with the exception of the red brick shop building was rebuilt following the devastating flood of 1972. The ponds were replaced by concrete raceways and a flood proof office/tank room was constructed.

During 2006 and 2007, Cleghorn Springs was completely renovated. The outdoor concrete raceways were replaced by 32 twenty-foot circular tanks enclosed within a building.

Updates to the hatchery infrastructure and monitoring systems should help ensure great fishing well into the future!

Cleghorn historical picture

Fish Spawning

Fish spawning and production takes place each spring on selected South Dakota waters. These video highlights the work our biologists do to supplement natural reproduction of walleye and salmon.