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Black Elk Wilderness

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Gems in Black Elk Wilderness - 4

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gem Favorite The walk to Mount Rushmore.

Mount Rushmore

(11) Custer, SD
gem Favorite Some nice climbing on the rocks around Sylvan Lake.

Sylvan Lake

(10) Custer, SD
gem Favorite The Cathedral Spires seen from the summit of Little Devils Tower

Little Devils Tower

(5) Custer, SD
gem Favorite Spire 2 and the Khayyam Spire towering above the trail

The Cathedral Spires

(7) Custer, SD

Recommended Routes in Black Elk Wilderness - 3

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Favorite A large storm blows into the park over Harney Peak.
Intermediate/Difficult

Black Elk Peak Loop

7.9 mi 12.7 km 1,357' Up 413.68 m Up 1,357' Down 413.67 m Down

Custer, SD
Favorite Mount Rushmore from The Centennial Trail.
Difficult

Horsethief Lake Loop

11.1 mi 17.9 km 1,672' Up 509.77 m Up 1,672' Down 509.72 m Down

Custer, SD
Favorite A large storm blows into the park over Harney Peak.
Intermediate/Difficult

Black Elk Peak Loop

15.7 mi 25.3 km 3,476' Up 1059.4 m Up 3,527' Down 1074.92 m Down

Custer, SD

Black Elk Wilderness Hiking

  • 87 Miles 139 Kilometers of Trail
  • 3 Recommended Routes
  • 4 Gems Gems
  • 2 Easy Trails Easy Trails
  • 15 Intermediate Trails Intermediate Trails
  • 2 Difficult Trails Difficult Trails
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Trails in Black Elk Wilderness - 16

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3.0 mi 4.9 km #1Sunday Gulch Trail
Difficult
Custer, SD
Difficult
Custer, SD 35 
3.3 mi 5.4 km #2Harney Peak #9 (South)
Intermediate/Difficult
Custer, SD
Intermediate/Difficult
Custer, SD 20 
0.9 mi 1.4 km #3Cathedral Spires Trail
Intermediate/Difficult
Custer, SD
Intermediate/Difficult
Custer, SD 19 
1.0 mi 1.6 km #4Sylvan Lake Shore Trail
Easy/Intermediate
Custer, SD
Easy/Intermediate
Custer, SD 14 
4.4 mi 7.1 km #5Harney Peak #9 (North)
Intermediate/Difficult
Custer, SD
Intermediate/Difficult
Custer, SD
6.1 mi 9.8 km #6Norbeck #3
Intermediate
Custer, SD
Intermediate
Custer, SD
1.8 mi 2.9 km #7Willow Creek Rushmore Trail #5
Intermediate/Difficult
Custer, SD
Intermediate/Difficult
Custer, SD
0.4 mi 0.6 km #8Little Devils Tower Trail
Difficult
Custer, SD
Difficult
Custer, SD
2.4 mi 3.8 km #9Little Devils Tower Trail #4
Intermediate/Difficult
Custer, SD
Intermediate/Difficult
Custer, SD
6.2 mi 10.0 km #10Grizzly #7
Difficult
Custer, SD
Difficult
Custer, SD

Photos of Black Elk Wilderness - 58

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View from Black Elk Peak
Dec 28, 2020 near Custer, SD
A large storm blows into the park over Harney Peak.
Mar 19, 2017 near Custer, SD
Gorgeous views into the Black Elk Nature Area peek through the trees along the Harney Peak Loop.
Feb 20, 2017 near Custer, SD
Curious locals
Aug 5, 2019 near Custer, SD
The Cathedral Spires seen from the summit of Little Devils Tower
Dec 26, 2018 near Custer, SD
Heading back toward Sylvan Lake, enjoy gorgeous, quiet, moss-covered woodlands.
Mar 19, 2017 near Custer, SD
Some nice climbing on the rocks around Sylvan Lake.
Nov 11, 2015 near Custer, SD
Panorama of Sylvan lake. One of the most beautiful lakes I have ever seen. If you are near Mount Rushmore take the time to drive up here and check it out. There is a nice trail that goes around the lake.
Nov 11, 2015 near Custer, SD