Even two months after Halloween, the world continues to be a scary place for any number of reasons. But when it comes to things that go bump in the night, we don't have a lot to be worried about in South Dakota.

Sure we have ghost tales coming out of various places in Deadwood, but when you're looking for states that make the hair on the back of your next stand up, you need to look elsewhere.

BestLife has ranked the Mount Rushmore State fourth on its list of the least scary states in America.

To arrive at each state's 'scary index' they look at things like unsolved homicide cases, according to Project: Cold Case. They also used numbers from Travel Channel shows like Ghost Adventures and Kindred Spirits to see which states were home to the most spooky characters.

The final two metrics involve UFO sightings, according to data from the National UFO Reporting Center and numbers from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention on the total number of deaths caused by animals.

South Dakota's report card:

  • Unsolved homicide cases: 20 percent
  • Haunted ranking: 34
  • UFO sightings per 100,000 residents: 2.94
  • Deaths caused by animals: 15
  • Scary Index Score: 15.77


  1. Nebraska
  2. Delaware
  3. North Dakota
  4. South Dakota
  5. Maryland
  6. Wyoming
  7. Mississippi
  8. Oklahoma
  9. Alaska
  10. South Carolina

On the spooky side, only one state maxed out at 100 points on the scary index - Texas

The Lone Star State came in at number three on the haunted ranking and was the clear leader in deaths caused by animals (356).


  1. Texas
  2. California
  3. Arizona
  4. Florida
  5. Ohio
  6. Montana
  7. Nevada
  8. New Mexico
  9. Indiana
  10. Michigan
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