Little Devil’s Tower and Harney Peak, Custer State Park, SD & Spearfish Canyon

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The climbing is so great around here and the hiking is no exception. There are so many gorgeous views, cliff faces and rock formations, challenging elevation gain, and cool forests, that we have to use a term our caving friend P coined, that it is “outrageously scenic.”

We hiked out and back to Little Devil’s Tower one morning. This was a fun little hike. The trail starts off pretty flat and easy, begins to gain some elevation, and then really gets going with some steeper switchbacks. Once the trail makes the last cut alongside the back side of Little Devil’s Tower, the real stair-stepping begins. This part is short but steep, with the final stage being on the rock itself. We really enjoyed this part especially, but unfortunately the fog was out in force, and lasted much longer than we’d hoped. We had been hopeful that the mid-morning sun could break through and burn off the fog, but it persisted, so we really had no view what-so-ever from the top. But since we had been getting some great views while rock climbing, we could envision what the view might be and weren’t too disappointed. We had also seen Little Devil’s Tower in the distance while sitting on top of Cathedral Spire #4. This just meant that we were able to head back to the trailhead and then get on with some rock climbing for the rest of the day!

(Die folgenden Fotos sind vom Kleinen Teufel’s Turm Wanderweg.)

Hiking up the Little Devil’s Tower trail

At the top of Little Devil’s Tower

Admiring the stone

Harney Peak was approximately 6-7 miles round trip via the trail we chose (depending on which map/sign you reference as they didn’t seem to be in agreement). We did this hike pretty quickly, as we got kind of a late start, and we weren’t sure how long the weather would hold out. The clouds were continuously shifting, but looked ominous enough in the distance. We were constantly moving from blue sky to shade, cool wind, and back to sun. There is a longer approach hike to Harney Peak from the north, which we hear is more strenuous and maybe more scenic, but this worked just fine and allowed us to be back before the rain and lightning started. The views more than made up for the fog on Little Devil’s Tower.

(Die folgenden Fotos sind vom Harney Gipfel Wanderweg.)

Hiking up the Harney Peak trail

The summit of Harney Peak

Hiking past the base of Little Devil’s Tower on the return trip from Harney Peak

One of our recent easy days consisted of a drive through Spearfish Canyon. This was nice and relaxing, and there was great scenery the entire way. Here are some pictures.

(Die folgenden Fotos sind von unsere Fahrt durch Spearfish Schlucht.)

Driving through Spearfish Canyon

Roughlock Falls

Bridal Veil Falls

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