A solo gravel cyclist riding by a lake with tree-covered hills in background
Glamp in the Badlands and Black Hills with Trek Travel and Under Canvas®
24BHGL-Riders-ADavison-1600X670 (3)
A gravel road amidst trees and rock outcrops
A solo gravel cyclist riding by a lake with tree-covered hills in background 24BHGL-LANDSCAPE-Davison-French-Creek-1600X670 24BHGL-Riders-ADavison-1600X670 Glamp in the Badlands and Black Hills with Trek Travel and Under Canvas® 24BHGL-Riders-ADavison-1600X670 (3) 24BHGL-LANDSCAPE-Davison-Hill-City2-1600X670 21SDUC0726JHershberger-38-1600X670 22SDUC-South-Dakota-IMG3640-1600X670 24BHGL-LANDSCAPE-Davison-Horses-1600X670 A gravel road amidst trees and rock outcrops

Black Hills Gravel Bike Tour

An unpaved adventure in South Dakota from Spearfish Canyon to Mt Rushmore

Join us for an epic adventure through the heart of the Black Hills in South Dakota! Ride from the northern to the southern edge on exquisite unpaved roads where every gravel mile promises awe-inspiring vistas and exhilarating discoveries. From the enchanting Spearfish Canyon to the historic charm of Deadwood, you’ll experience wondrous and rustic beauty in every direction. Pedal along a network of gravel roads that unveil the grandeur of the Hills as they weave through the forest, connecting small towns while the gentle music of nearby creeks remains your constant companion. Witness nature's artistry as you transition to the Southern Hills and stay at Sylvan Lake Lodge, surrounded by towering granite spires that reach for the sky. Revel in the untamed allure of Custer State Park's wildlife loop and delight in a farewell dinner at the renowned Skogen Kitchen. Feel the pulse of history as you visit Mt Rushmore, a final stop before you depart. This is more than just a ride – the magic of the Black Hills will resonate with you long after you’re gone. Book your trip with confidence »
Learn if a Gravel trip is right for you »
Black Hills Gravel Bike Tour
$2599 Per Person
5 Days & 4 Nights
Rider Level: ?
3 - Active
Trip Style: ?
Hotel Level: ?
From $2599 per person View All Details
Trip Wows
Enjoy the tranquility of gravel roads as you meander along streams and climb through the pines of the Black Hills National Forest
Stay at Sylvan Lake Lodge and pedal along the stunning Needles Highway, named for the surrounding granite rock formations
Visit the small towns of Spearfish, Deadwood and Custer, and tour the iconic Mt Rushmore
Experience the awe-inspiring beauty of Spearfish Canyon and ride the most scenic segments of the Mickelson rail trail
Savor a gourmet dinner at Skogen Kitchen, South Dakota's best kept secret
Watch the Experience
Black Hills Gravel Bike Tour
The Black Hills are an undiscovered gravel cycling paradise. There is no better way to experience the quiet majesty of the forest than to pedal the endless gravel roads that weave through it from end to end. Don't take my word for it. Come and explore, and I promise you will not be disappointed!
-Amy, Trip Designer

Dates & Prices

The Earlier You Book, The Greater The Rewards

We reward our guests with lower pricing and more dates to choose from the earlier you book. Rest assured, once you book, your price and date are guaranteed.
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Single Occupancy from: +$599
Jun 16 – Jun 20 
$2699 / Person, Double Occupancy / Plus 6.2% state and local sales tax / Discover trip inclusions Book this date
Jun 23 – Jun 27 
$2699 / Person, Double Occupancy / Plus 6.2% state and local sales tax / Discover trip inclusions Book this date
Jun 30 – Jul 4 
$2599 / Person, Double Occupancy / Plus 6.2% state and local sales tax / Discover trip inclusions Book this date
Jul 7 – Jul 11 
$2599 / Person, Double Occupancy / Plus 6.2% state and local sales tax / Discover trip inclusions Book this date
Jul 14 – Jul 18 
$2599 / Person, Double Occupancy / Plus 6.2% state and local sales tax / Discover trip inclusions Book this date
Jul 21 – Jul 25 
$2599 / Person, Double Occupancy / Plus 6.2% state and local sales tax / Discover trip inclusions Book this date
Aug 18 – Aug 22 
$2699 / Person, Double Occupancy / Plus 6.2% state and local sales tax / Discover trip inclusions Book this date
Aug 25 – Aug 29 
$2699 / Person, Double Occupancy / Plus 6.2% state and local sales tax / Discover trip inclusions Book this date
Sep 1 – Sep 5 
$2599 / Person, Double Occupancy / Plus 6.2% state and local sales tax / Discover trip inclusions Book this date
Don't see your ideal travel date? 
Call us at (866) 464-8735 for custom date availability
Looking for a one of a kind, once in a lifetime experience?
Look no further. Choose your trip date, get your group together and we will do the rest. Private trip pricing is as follows:

  • 10+ Guests Price as advertised*
  • 8-9 Guests +$750 per person to trip price*
  • 6-7 Guests +$1,500 per person to trip price*
  • 4-5 Guests +$2,000 per person to trip price*
  • 2-3 Guests +$3,000 per person to trip price*
  • 1 Guest        Call us for pricing*

Traveling with a small group? Consider semi-private trips.
For groups of up to six people, semi-private trips offer unique flexibility within a larger Trek Travel guided trip. Learn more »

*Pricing, availability and guest minimums are all subject to change at any time. Certain dates have a minimum number of guests required, please contact us for details. Private pricing is not available on Ride Camp, Race, Special Edition or Cross Country style trips.
Looking for a date that you don’t see?
Look no further. Simply tell us your preferred travel dates and we’ll work together to deliver the same great trip on your custom schedule.
*Pricing, availability and guest minimums are all subject to change at any time. Certain dates have a minimum number of guests required, please contact us for details. Custom dates are not available on Ride Camp, Race, Special Edition or Cross Country style trips.
Want to customize this trip?
We've got you covered. We’ll work with you to build your perfect vacation from scratch, including your choice of riding, accommodations and dining options. With the help of our trip designers and travel experts, the world is available like never before.
*Pricing, availability and guest minimums are all subject to change at any time. Certain dates have a minimum number of guests required, please contact us for details. Custom trips are not available on Ride Camp, Race, Special Edition or Cross Country style trips.

Meet your guides in the lobby of the Holiday Inn Downtown Convention Center in Rapid City at 8:00 AM for a shuttle to Spearfish, where you'll start off with a bike fitting session. After your guides share some safety tips and route highlights, you'll head out on your first ride. Following a couple of short miles of pavement, you'll reach the unpaved roads that wind through the rolling ranch land north of town. Stretch your legs and settle into the gentle climbs as you get ready for a big week of riding! The ride ends at City Park where you can cool your legs in Spearfish Creek or visit the DC Booth Fish Hatchery while your guides prepare a signature Trek Travel picnic. Afterwards, once you are checked into your room at the Best Western, you'll have some time to unwind before gathering for a stroll to dinner. Your guides will fill you in on the adventures to come as you enjoy a welcome drink and dinner at our favorite local restaurant.

Today's Ride:

Chicken Creek Loop
Approximately 29 mi | 47 km and 1,600 ft | 488 m


Black Hills Best Western

Included Meals:

Lunch | Dinner

Enjoy a hearty breakfast before meeting at the bikes for your first full day of adventure. Today’s ride begins with a paved climb up Spearfish Canyon scenic byway, while the avid route takes a long, gradual gravel climb into Black Hills National Forest. Wind your way through the pines and aspens on this peaceful, scenic road to the high point at Old Baldy, which is just shy of 6,100 feet (1,859 meters), then enjoy the flowy, jaw-dropping descent to Roughlock Falls and Spearfish Canyon where the routes converge. Be sure to keep an eye out for osprey overhead and pause for photos along the way, perhaps stopping at the overlook for Roughlock or Spearfish Falls. As you reach Savoy, the stunning ride transitions to a mix of pavement and gravel roads before the last few miles on the Mickelson rail trail deliver you into Deadwood. After getting settled at the Deadwood Mountain Grand, the evening is yours to explore. Enjoy dinner on your own in this Wild West town, best known for its most famous gunslinger, Wild Bill Hickok, and the colorful Calamity Jane.

Today's Ride:

Spearfish to Deadwood via Spearfish Canyon
Approximately 44 mi | 72 km and 3,300 ft | 1,006 m

Short Option:

Savoy to Deadwood with Shuttle
Approximately 19 mi | 32 km and 1,000 ft | 305 m

Avid Option:

Spearfish to Deadwood via Higgins Gulch
Approximately 52 mi | 84 km and 4,600 ft | 1402 m


Deadwood Mountain Grand

Included Meals:

Breakfast | Lunch

Fuel up with a hearty breakfast to prepare for today's incredible ride through the heart of the Black Hills. Today's ride follows the Mickelson Trail all the way to Hill City, while the short option starts with a boost in the van and pedals the final 20 miles of trail to Hill City. Avid riders will ride gravel forest roads over more challenging but equally scenic terrain, connected by a few sections of the trail. All routes pass through the small town of Rochford, founded in 1978 when gold was discovered in a nearby creek. Today, the population is somewhere between 8 and 25 people, and it survives on tourism. Be sure to step inside the legendary Moonshine Gulch Saloon while you are there! Enjoy this beautiful stretch of the Mickelson Trail including the rail tunnels near Mystic. Avid riders will again diverge on forest roads, but everyone will meet in Hill City where you'll have lunch at one of our local favorite cafes. Afterwards, you'll shuttle to your home for the next two nights, Sylvan Lake Lodge. Dinner will be at your leisure at the Lodge, so you'll have time to relax and recover for another epic ride tomorrow.

Today's Ride:

Deadwood to Hill City via Mickelson Trail
Approximately 50 mi | 80 km and 3,300 ft | 1,006 m

Short Option:

Rochford to Hill City with Shuttles
Approximately 20 mi | 35 km and 1,250 ft | 381 m

Avid Option:

Deadwood to Hill City
Approximately 65 mi | 105 km and 5,500 ft | 1,676 m


Sylvan Lake Lodge

Included Meals:

Breakfast | Lunch | Dinner

Gear up for the week's final big ride today! You'll begin with a short descent to Sylvan Lake. One look at the crystal blue water surrounded by rounded granite rock formations reveals why it's known as the "Crown Jewel" of Custer State Park. From here, you’ll climb up Needles Highway and thread through the Needles Eye tunnel before turning onto gravel and making your way to Custer State Park. You'll pedal the gravel roads of the famous Wildlife Loop, where it is common to encounter some of the 1,500 bison who call the park home. You may also see wildlife such as pronghorn antelopes, burros, prairie dogs, and big horn sheep. Enjoy the scenery as you ride through beautiful open grasslands and pine speckled hills. Avid riders will pedal all the way to Custer, while the other options end in the park and shuttle to Custer, where you'll enjoy lunch at a cafe of your choosing. Your guides will, of course, arm you with suggestions. Afterwards, you'll shuttle the short 15 minutes back to the Lodge. This evening, you'll head back to Custer and celebrate in style with a gourmet dinner at Skogen Kitchen.

Today's Ride:

Sylvan Lake to Bluebell Lodge with Shuttle
Approximately 42 mi | 68 km and 3,000 ft | 914 m

Short Option:

Sylvan Lake to Wildlife Loop with Shuttle
Approximately 32 mi | 51 km and 1,850 ft | 564 m

Avid Option:

Sylvan Lake to Custer
Approximately 54 mi | 87 km and 4,150 ft | 1,265 m


Sylvan Lake Lodge

Included Meals:

Breakfast | Dinner

Rise and enjoy a final morning at the Lodge with incredible views in every direction. After breakfast, take a final spin to Palmer Creek trailhead and tackle one final climb back to the hotel. There are also scenic hiking options from the Lodge, or you can simply relax and enjoy a leisurely morning. After checking out, you'll head to Mt Rushmore where you'll get a closeup view of the iconic mountain. The 60-foot sculptures of four U.S. Presidents took 14 years to complete using jackhammers and munitions to carve into sheer granite. You can walk the short path to the sculptor’s studio to learn more about the process. Enjoy a casual lunch at Mt Rushmore. Afterwards, it's a short 30-minute drive to Rapid City. Your guides will offer a stop at the Holiday Inn Downtown Convention Center and also at the Rapid City Airport. Please do not book a flight before 3:30 pm to allow for any potential delays.

Today's Ride:

Sylvan Lake to Palmer Creek Return
Approximately 13 mi | 21 km and 950 ft | 290 m

Included Meals:

Breakfast | Lunch


hotel image

Best Western Black Hills Lodge

Spearfish, South Dakota

Explorer Accommodation | The Best Western Black Hills Lodge offers welcoming hospitality, pristine rooms, and a full hot breakfast. It is a short walk from Main Street which is lined with shops, restaurants, and local favorite hangouts like the Public House and the Spearfish Brewing Company.
hotel image

Deadwood Mountain Grand

Deadwood, South Dakota

Explorer Accommodation | Located in the heart of the wild western town that was once the center of the Black Hills gold rush, the Deadwood Mountain Grand is the perfect stopover on this journey. The hotel is located in the former Slime Plant for the Homestake Gold Mine but you wouldn't know it today, as it was beautifully renovated in 2023. It has a refreshing indoor pool for hot days and often features live music for cool evenings. Historic Main Street is a short walk where you can find colorful shops and a variety of bars and restaurants.
hotel image

Sylvan Lake Lodge

Custer, South Dakota

Explorer Accommodation | Sylvan Lake Lodge is surrounded by granite spires, perched on the hillside above the picturesque Sylvan Lake. Stunning views abound in all directions. We will stay in a mixture of cabins and lodge rooms which offer rustic comfort in a peaceful setting. The lodge also has a full service restaurant and bar, outdoor patio and is adjacent to hiking trails.

What's Included

For us, the details matter most

Every moment of a Trek Travel bike trip has more than you could have ever dreamed. More romance. More scenery. More choice. It's the little additions to every Trek Travel cycling vacation that make it truly special. And that's how we help you create more memories.


Trek Checkpoint SLR 7

Take on the challenge of gravel with the knowledge that you are riding the best gravel bike in the business. With a high performance frame designed to be nimble yet stable, and the smoothing effect of rear IsoSpeed technology, it will let you ride with ease on any type of surface. The rugged drivetrain allows you to enjoy smooth and reliable shifting no matter the terrain. It also features Shimano hydraulic disc brakes for predictable and safe stopping power wherever you go. The 45mm tubeless gravel tires will give you confidence to tackle any bump in the road. If you want to escape the concrete, and adventure unpaved, let this bike take you there. Learn More


Trek Electric-Assist Domane+ SLR 7

Take the tailwind with you and leave your limits behind on the all-new Domane+ SLR 7. With a groundbreaking ratio of ultra-lightweight design and electric assist, Domane+ SLR 7 has everything you love in a road bike, with the extra boost to take you farther than ever before. This performance e-road bike will help you on the climbs, hang with the fast group, and venture further on your cycling vacation. So go ahead – take the long way. With Domane+ SLR 7, there’s always room for more distance, more speed, and more fun! Upgrade to the Domane+ SLR 7 on this trip for $399 (3-6 day trips) or $599 (7+ day trips). Available in limited quantities. Please contact a Trip Consultant to check availability. Learn More


  • Four nights of accommodation at a handpicked hotel
  • Two experienced guides to provide local knowledge, support, and camaraderie
  • Daily route support with both guides and our support van
  • Daily breakfast, four lunches, and three dinners
  • Ride a Trek Checkpoint SLR 7
  • Up to three daily route options on riding days
  • Snacks and drinks for each day's ride
  • Trek Travel water bottles to keep
  • Cinch sack day bag to keep
  • Each bike is equipped with a Garmin Edge 1030 GPS computer, in-frame storage containing a tube, levers, and a CO2 cartridge with inflator, front and rear Bontrager Flare R lights, a Bontrager saddle, and pedals (Shimano SPD dual-sided clipless mountain pedals)
  • Bontrager WaveCel helmets
  • All gratuities for drivers, local experts, and hospitality staff
  • All luggage transfers and transportation during your trip
  • A digital photo album of your trip
  • Entrance fees for all activities, private tours, and events


  • Upgrade your ride to the Trek Electric-Assist Domane+ SLR 7 specially outfitted with 40mm Bontrager GR1 tires (+$399, subject to availability.)
  • Trek Checkpoint SLR 7 carbon gravel bike with Shimano GRX electronic shifting and Bontrager carbon wheels
  • Tubeless Pirelli Cinturato Gravel M tires, size 45 mm
  • Trek Travel Bontrager cycling jersey to keep
  • Trek Travel water bottles to keep
  • Shimano SPD dual sided clipless mountain pedals
  • Bontrager WaveCel helmet
  • Bontrager men's and women's specific saddles
  • Bontrager front and rear Flare R lights
  • In-frame storage containing a tube, levers, and a CO2 cartridge with inflator
  • Garmin Edge 1030 GPS computer
  • Cinch sack day bag to keep
  • Coupon valued up to $500 off a new Trek Bicycle. Your coupon will be delivered via email prior to your trip
  • For the most comfortable ride, you may choose to bring your own pedals, saddle, and helmet on the trip. Your guides will install your gear on the first day during your bike fit.


Guide gratuities are customary and at your own discretion, to recognize service, hospitality, and the little extras that surprise and delight. For this Discover Gravel trip, we suggest a tip for your guides between $150-$200 per guest and, of course, you may choose to give more if your guides made your trip an unforgettable experience. While local currency is preferred, there are other options to make tipping easier. Most guides accept gratuity via PayPal or our staff can help before or after the trip. Gratuities will be divided among the guide team, so feel free to leave your gratuity with whomever you choose at the end of your trip.
  • Airfare and transportation to and from the trip pick-up/drop-off locations
  • Lodging before and after the trip
  • Personal items purchased during the trip
  • Optional activities not scheduled by Trek Travel
  • On select trips some meals are not included. On these trips, Trek Travel invites you to explore the local cuisine at your leisure.

More Information

Rider Level: 3 - Active?

57 kilometers / 36 miles
286 kilometers / 178 miles
744 meters / 2,540 feet
3,871 meters / 12,700 feet
The unpaved surfaces on our Black Hills Gravel bike tour are rated as Intermediate. About 65% of Today's rides and 72% of the Avid rides are unpaved. You can expect gravel roads that are primarily smooth dirt roads with sparse to moderate amounts of gravel. At times, there will be short sections of rougher road that may have deep or chunky gravel, potholes, ruts, or washboard like surfaces. Between Days 2 and 3, depending on which options you choose, you'll ride a total of 35-60 miles (56-97 km) on the Mickelson Trail. The Mickelson is a rail trail, but it is more challenging than most, with maximum grades of 5-10% near Deadwood. The Black Hills are between 5,000-7,000 feet (1,524-2,133 meters) in elevation, winds can be strong, and the weather can be unpredictable. The terrain varies from short steep hills to long, gradual climbs. Expect minimal traffic and few services for most of the rides, as you will be riding in the Black Hills National Forest and the gravel roads in Custer State Park. The support van will not always follow the entire route, but will be posted up at strategic points along the way. Our Black Hills Gravel bike tour is best suited for Level 3 riders who have experience riding gravel roads and are accustomed to varied gravel conditions and hilly terrain. Level 4 riders will enjoy the extra mileage and climbs the avid route options offer. Our Trek Travel guides can accommodate Type 2 Riders, who seek less mileage or fewer uphills, however you will encounter significant time shuttling in the van. If you have gravel experience but are concerned about your physical ability to conquer the mileage and elevation, you may want to try our Domane+ electric-assist bike option.
This destination is best suited to guests who want to cycle every day. Because of the terrain and/or remoteness of the hotels and riding routes, there are few, if any, non-riding options available. If a non-rider wants to accompany a rider guest on this trip, they would need to spend many hours in the van and/or at the hotels on the trip. Due to this, we strongly discourage non-riders from this destination. As an alternative, call a Trek Travel Trip Consultant at 866-464-8735 for trip suggestions where more non-rider activities are available, such as:
  • Bentonville Gravel
  • Tuscany Gravel
  • Shenandoah Valley Gravel
  • Swiss Alps Gravel

See itinerary for specific daily ride distances and elevation options. This is a Discover Gravel trip. Our itineraries are an approximation of our trips. Trek Travel strives to offer every guest a vacation of a lifetime on every trip. On our gravel cycling vacations, Trek Travel seeks to find well maintained, non-technical gravel roads and bike paths; unmaintained roads and roads with ruts or deep or chunky gravel are avoided as much as possible. However, gravel roads are dynamic by nature. Road surfaces change throughout the year depending on maintenance (grading, adding new gravel) and weather, particularly rain. Our guides will be constantly monitoring road conditions and may change the routes as needed to provide the best possible riding experience. In addition, as with all of our trips, at times routes, hotels, activities, etc. listed here may change at the discretion of the trip designer or guides to improve the trip experience.

Averages and totals are calculated from our "Today’s Ride" options.

Travel Details

How to Get There

Rapid City Regional Airport (RAP)
8:00 AM
Holiday Inn Downtown Convention Center, Rapid City

Say Farewell

Rapid City Regional Airport (RAP)
2:00 PM
Rapid City Regional Airport (RAP)


We suggest that you arrive at least one day prior to the start of your Black Hills Gravel bike tour, which will enable you to adjust to the time zone and minimize the risk of missing the trip start due to flight-related delays. We recommend that you fly into the Rapid City Regional Airport (RAP).

From the airport, if you are staying at the Holiday Inn Downtown Convention Center (our meeting hotel), they offer a shuttle for $12 per person. Just call the front desk (605-348-4000) when you land. The drive takes about 20 minutes. If you are driving to the trip, you can park at the Holiday Inn for the week if you book a pre or post night here. Just ask the front desk for a parking pass. If staying elsewhere, you may book a shuttle to any Rapid City hotel by calling Rapid Shuttle (605-399-9999) or booking online at www.rapidshuttle.com.

Your Trek Travel guides will meet you in the lobby of the Holiday Inn Downtown Convention Center (505 N 5th St, Rapid City, SD 57701) at 8:00 AM on the first day of the trip. Your trip begins with a 45-minute shuttle to Spearfish, where you'll enjoy a bike fitting session followed by your first ride. Please come dressed in your riding clothes and have your riding gear as well as a change of clothes for after the ride in a separate, readily accessible bag. Your main luggage will be stored until you reach the first hotel.

If you will be late for the meeting or are going to miss it altogether, please inform your guides. You will receive an email a week before the trip start with their name and contact details. If you cannot reach them, please call the Best Western Black Hills Lodge (605-642-7795), and leave a message with your expected arrival time and contact details.

View our pre hotel recommendations


You will say farewell to your guides at 1:30 PM at the Holiday Inn Downtown Convention Center in Rapid City or at the Rapid City Regional Airport at 2:00 PM.

View our post hotel recommendations

Planning For Your Trip

Packing and Weather

Temperatures can vary widely in June, are generally warm to hot in July and milder in late August and September. For example, the average high in Spearfish in June and late August/early September trips is high 70s, while in July, it is high 80s. In Deadwood and Custer, where you spend the majority of the trip, it is usually 5-10 degrees cooler because you are at higher elevations. Expect low temps in the mid 40s to mid 50s. Always bring layers and rain gear, as well as a light jacket for evenings. Packing List

Before and After Your Trip


Before & After: Rapid City, South Dakota

Rapid City is known as the gateway to the Badlands and Black Hills and is the perfect home base for exploring these areas. Rent a mountain bike and ride the trails on M Hill or take a self-guided walking tour of the presidential statues and peruse the art alley in the center of town. Try a pint at Lost Cabin or Dakota Point Brewing followed by dinner at Juniper or Delmonico Grill. Rent a car for a day trip to Badlands National Park where you can enjoy short hikes, bison and big horn sheep sightings, and incredible photo opportunities, particularly at dawn and dusk. You could also visit Crazy Horse and spend more time exploring all that Custer State Park has to offer such as hiking, fishing, motorcycle riding, or a performance at the Black Hills Playhouse. If you want an adventure a bit farther, you could also venture to Devil's Tower in Wyoming. We recommend the following accommodations for your pre- and post-trip hotel:

Why Trek Travel

Our Bikes

Our unrivaled selection of Trek Bikes sets the bar for quality and comfort. From the ultra-smooth Trek Domane SL 7 to the Trek Electric-Assist Verve+, you deserve the best ride on your vacation. Plus, we offer a range upgrade options to take you the extra mile.

Our Guides

Our guides are trained to make your trip magical. They aren't just experts in riding; they're trained in delivering uncompromising service in ways you won't believe. We know that it's the unexpected surprises that make a trip magical. That's why our guides pride themselves on anticipating your needs before you ask.

Your Day. You Decide.

Our vacations are built to deliver the ultimate in flexibility, from extreme relaxers to hard-core roadies. You pick your mileage, itinerary and experiences. We take care of the rest.

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