Hiking Project Logo

Black Elk Wilderness

Area suggestions or local tips? Tell us!

Zoom in to see details
Map Key

Weather Averages


High
 
Low
 
Precip
 
Days w/
 
J F M A M J J A S O N D

52 mi 83 km of trail 2 Featured Hikes

Gems 4 Gems Easy Trails 3 Trails Intermediate Trails 15 Trails Hard Trails 0 Trails

Area suggestions or local tips? Tell us!
Hiking Project is built by hikers like you.
Share what you know about this area with the community.

Gems in Black Elk Wilderness - 4

Hiking Project is built by hikers like you. Add Your Gems

gem Favorite The walk to Mount Rushmore.

Mount Rushmore

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

Sylvan Lake

(8) Custer, SD
gem Favorite View from the top

Little Devils Tower

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

The Cathedral Spires

(5) Custer, SD

Featured Hikes in Black Elk Wilderness - 2

Hiking Project is built by hikers like you. Add Your Hikes

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

Black Elk Peak Loop

7.9 mi 12.7 km • Loop • 1,357 ft Ascent 413.68 m Ascent

(36) Custer, SD
Favorite Mount Rushmore from The Centennial Trail.
Intermediate/Difficult

Horsethief Lake Loop

11.1 mi 17.9 km • Loop • 1,672 ft Ascent 509.77 m Ascent

(1) Custer, SD

Trails in Black Elk Wilderness - 16

Hiking Project is built by hikers like you. Add Your Trails

3.0 mi 4.9 km #1Sunday Gulch Trail
Intermediate/Difficult
Custer, SD
Intermediate/Difficult
3.0 mi 4.9 km Custer, SD 22 
3.3 mi 5.4 km #2Harney Peak #9 (South)
Intermediate
Custer, SD
Intermediate
3.3 mi 5.4 km Custer, SD 18 
4.4 mi 7.1 km #3Harney Peak #9 (North)
Intermediate/Difficult
Custer, SD
Intermediate/Difficult
4.4 mi 7.1 km Custer, SD
0.9 mi 1.4 km #4Cathedral Spires Trail
Intermediate
Custer, SD
Intermediate
0.9 mi 1.4 km Custer, SD 11 
1.0 mi 1.6 km #5Sylvan Lake Shore Trail
Easy/Intermediate
Custer, SD
Easy/Intermediate
1.0 mi 1.6 km Custer, SD
0.4 mi 0.6 km #6Little Devils Tower Trail
Intermediate/Difficult
Custer, SD
Intermediate/Difficult
0.4 mi 0.6 km Custer, SD
6.1 mi 9.8 km #7Norbeck #3
Intermediate
Custer, SD
Intermediate
6.1 mi 9.8 km Custer, SD
1.6 mi 2.6 km #8Willow Creek Rushmore Trail #5
Easy/Intermediate
Custer, SD
Easy/Intermediate
1.6 mi 2.6 km Custer, SD
2.4 mi 3.8 km #9Little Devils Tower Trail #4
Intermediate
Custer, SD
Intermediate
2.4 mi 3.8 km Custer, SD
6.2 mi 10.0 km #10Grizzly #7
Intermediate/Difficult
Custer, SD
Intermediate/Difficult
6.2 mi 10.0 km Custer, SD
2.7 mi 4.4 km #11Horsethief Lake #14
Intermediate/Difficult
Custer, SD
Intermediate/Difficult
2.7 mi 4.4 km Custer, SD
0.9 mi 1.4 km #12Mt. Rushmore Spur Trail
Intermediate
Custer, SD
Intermediate
0.9 mi 1.4 km Custer, SD
10.3 mi 16.6 km #13Centennial On Hell #89-HC
Intermediate/Difficult
Custer, SD
Intermediate/Difficult
10.3 mi 16.6 km Custer, SD
1.9 mi 3.1 km #14Centennial Bypass #89B
Intermediate
Custer, SD
Intermediate
1.9 mi 3.1 km Custer, SD
2.6 mi 4.2 km #15Willow Creek Trail #8
Easy/Intermediate
Custer, SD
Easy/Intermediate
2.6 mi 4.2 km Custer, SD
3.8 mi 6.2 km #16Lost Cabin #2
Intermediate
Custer, SD
Intermediate
3.8 mi 6.2 km Custer, SD

Photos of Black Elk Wilderness - 52

Hiking Project is built by hikers like you. Add Your Photos

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
Some nice climbing on the rocks around Sylvan Lake.
Nov 11, 2015 near Custer, SD
Making our way 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
One of the most beautiful lakes I have ever seen. About a 45 minute drive from Mount Rushmore, Lake Sylvan.
Nov 11, 2015 near Custer, SD
Sneaking up on Washington
Aug 5, 2019 near Colonia…, SD
View from the top
Aug 5, 2019 near Custer, SD

Classes & Events Near You

Find More Classes and Events

Shop REI Adventures

Find More REI Adventures


Hiking Project is part of the REI Co-op family,
where a life outdoors is a life well lived.

Shop REI Hiking