Mahto Tipila, also known as Devil’s Tower, is sacred to the Lakota.

Devil’s Tower Prayer Gathering and Walk to Protect Sacred Sites

Charmaine White Face

On Saturday, June 28, a Prayer Gathering for the protection of sacred and burial sites will be held at Mahto Tipila, also known as Devil’s Tower.

Starting at 10:30 a.m. at the Ceremonial Grounds on the west side of Mahto Tipila, those who are able will continue a Prayer Walk around the base—a distance of 1.3 miles—finishing again at the Ceremonial Grounds. Elders and those unable to do the Prayer Walk may stay at the Ceremonial Grounds.

No pipes will be filled but prayer ties and flags may be tied on the trees at the Ceremonial Grounds.

Traditional dress is encouraged and women are asked to wear skirts and no revealing clothing as was our traditional custom. All tribes and people are welcome.

This is not a media event so do not bring cameras, recorders, or film to the ceremonies.

The National Park Service has waived the fee for those coming to the Prayer Gathering.

A potluck lunch will be held at the conclusion of the prayers.

A carpool will be leaving the Mother Butler Center in Rapid City, South Dakota at 7:30 a.m.

Bring you own umbrellas and lawn chairs.

For more information email

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bullbear's picture
Submitted by bullbear on
Pardon my ignorance, but why is it called Devils Tower? Is there historically, something terrible occurred there? Prayer walk and Devils Tower somehow do not seem to flow in the same vein. Please enlighten ignorant people such as myself of this hallowed ground. I only ask, because I recall that the ceremonial Apache Crown Dance was referred to as Devils Dance by those who had absolutely no knowledge of its purposes and declared it devil dance primarily because of the hooded face covering and described as jumping over fire. It has taken decades to educate non-Indians of the sacredness and great significance the Crown dancers or Ga'an that are a significant part of the unique tradition and ceremony of the N'de (People.)