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Sacred Mountain Retreat Center offers cost-free, 7-day, retreats to Active Military, Veterans, and First Responders who suffer from PTSD or Trauma.

Our retreats are set in the beautiful Black Hills of South Dakota on 65 peaceful acres. We are a catalyst for positive change in the lives of our heroes. We help to eliminate the noise of everyday life and encourage healing through exposure to nature, alternative healing methods, and open communication with our brothers and sisters in arms.

Our program is 100% mentor-based. We don’t have counselors or therapists. We use hands-on therapy that promotes comradery. The activities that attendees participate in include equine therapy, working with our hands through metal work, leather work and woodworking, beautifying the land surrounding the lodge, meal preparation, body healing and more.

Retreat Activities

Equine Therapy

People who have PTSD often live in a state of hypervigilance and can feel threatened by everyday events. Horses exist in a similar state. The similarities may help the bond between horses and humans recovering from trauma. When the heroes interact with our horses, they will often see their emotional state reflected in the reactions of the horses they are working with. The confidence that they can gain from interacting with horses can flow over into other aspects of their lives.

Equine therapy helps our heroes overcome fear, unknowingness, and rejection. It also helps them build emotional awareness, confidence, trust, empathy, and problem-solving skills.

Working with our Hands

With guidance from local artists and craftsmen, the attendees forge knives from railroad spikes and create leather sheaths for them along with leather American flags.

Our heroes will have hands-on therapy, supporting them with mental wellness through the process of creating something out of nothing. This helps build self-esteem, reduce anxiety and strengthen coping mechanisms.

Meal Preparation

Cooking holds many positive benefits for those who are dealing with PTSD. Not only does it help sufferers find a healthy relationship with food, it teaches them to plan meals, and create meals the attendees and mentors will enjoy together. Food is associated with comfort and many good memories are association with sitting together for a good meal. Those living with PTSD can find it therapeutic to organize and prepare meals.

Culinary therapy can improve social skills, organizational skills, ability to focus on the positive and raise self-esteem.

Body Therapy

Attendees have daily physical therapy sessions with the options of guided yoga, massage therapy from a very talented massage therapist, time in the workout room, a hike in the woods, a session in the mobile cryosauna or a session in one of our state-of-the-art HOTWORX Infrared Saunas.

Body healing helps those with PTSD by promoting overall relaxation. This has many positive impacts on our heroes living with PTSD. Increased relaxation can result in more normal sleep patterns, less pain and a more positive way of thinking.


SMRC is honored to have HOTWORX as a major sponsor and have two of their infrared saunas on site. These saunas combine heat, infrared, and exercise to improve strength, cardio, flexibility, circulation, and immunity while also burning fat, decreasing workout recovery time and increasing metabolism. As the infrared heat penetrates the body, causing perspiration, the isometric poses further accelerate the removal of toxins from internal organs.