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blueBlack Black Elk Peak Loop

  4.7 ( 31 ) Favorite

Trail

7.9 mile 12.7 kilometer loop
Intermediate/Difficult

Elevation

Ascent: 1,357' 414 m
Descent: -1,357' -414 m
High: 7,152' 2,180 m
Low: 6,160' 1,877 m

Grade

Avg Grade: 7% (4°)
Max Grade: 31% (17°)

Dogs

Leashed
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Trail shared by Greg Sage

A shorter loop, great for a day hike.

Greg Sage

Features Fall Colors · Lake · River/Creek · Swimming · Views · Wildlife

Family Friendly Great view from the observation tower; kids will love it.

No Camping within 1/4 mile of summit. No open fires within the Black Elk Nature Preserve.

This is part of the Custer State Park Area. Entry Fee, or Annual Park Permit is required. Area is closed during the winter months.

Overview

This loop hike utilizes multiple named trails to go from Sylvan Lake to Black Elk Peak, and back to Sylvan Lake.

This peak was previously known as "Harney Peak."

Description

This is a great day-trip from Sylvan Lake to Black Elk Peak (formerly "Harney Peak"). The loop takes you up past Little Devils Tower along the Little Devils Tower Trail #4, joining with the Cathedral Spires Trail #4A, and continuing on to meet up with the Norbeck #3 trail to finally reach the summit of Black Elk Peak (7,244').

The return brings you down a different path using the Harney Peak #9 (South) trail. This will allow you to see different views on the way back.

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Check-Ins

Jul 15, 2019
Nick Potocki
Hiked with the Fuhrmann's. Wyatt is 6. Jameson and Tyler are 3. Sydney is 1.5 years. Everyone made the entire hike. — 10h 30m
Jul 2, 2019
Danielle Andrews
7.5mi
Jun 29, 2019
Jericho Kouba
loved it 7.9mi — 6h 22m
Jun 27, 2019
Tara Gregg
7.6mi — 4h 39m
May 11, 2019
Andrew Hartnett
Had to dose some snow squalls but otherwise a perfect shoulder season day! 7.9mi
Sep 3, 2018
Sarah S
Started with the south loop, trail #9 up to the peak, then stopped by Little Devils Tower on the way down. Amazing views. Truly wonderful hike.
Aug 28, 2018
Luke Mader
Aug 27, 2018
Eric Miller
Had 9 month old with. Good long hike. Beautiful views at the top! 8mi

Trail Ratings

  4.7 from 31 votes

#178

Overall
  4.7 from 31 votes
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#1

in South Dakota

#178

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7,663 Since Feb 20, 2017
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