Harney Peak - South Dakota Highpoint

#1 of 32 trails in black hills national forest
Sylvan Lake Harney Trail is a 7 mile out and back trail located near Custer, South Dakota that features a lake and is rated as moderate. The trail is primarily used for hiking and is accessible year-round. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.

6.94 miles Out & Back 5166 feet
Dog Friendly
hiking trail running horses dogs leash forest lake
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Theresa Goebel

3 Completed2 Reviews

Long hike & strenuous at times, but well worth it once you get to the top! Breathtaking!

Jenn Albertson

2 Completed2 Reviews

Christina Nauman

13 Completed13 Reviews

Such a long hike but definitely worth it. I'm from SD originally and I still find my state beautiful.

Brandon Bahensky

7 Completed1 Reviews

A fun little hike in South Dakota. Nothing to strenuous, most likely something the whole family could enjoy. Be careful of falling trees. We went on a day with 50-60mph wind gusts and with all the beetle kill this meant that dead trees were literally falling left and right. The tower at the top gives a great view and is a great place to stop and eat lunch. We sent on a Sunday and while it was off season it was still a pretty busy trail. I can imagine that certain times of year this trail maybe a little too heavily used for my liking.

Penny Hanke

19 Completed19 Reviews

It can get surprisingly hot; take lots of water.

Terry Gabriel

1 Completed1 Reviews

Fun and a Great Workout. View from the top is fantastic.

Brent Radcliffe

1 Completed1 Reviews

I hiked the Harney Peak Trail from the north entrance (State Hwy 244), starting at the northern part of the Willow Creek loop. The trail is 5.6 miles one-way from the Willow Creek trailhead to Harney Peak. The overall difference in elevation is 2200 feet, but with all the ups and down the elevation gain is actually 2789 feet. The elevation really picks up half-way through the ascent: the first half has a 730 foot gain and the last half has a 1500 foot gain. Odds are you will feel the burn.

The trail itself features a variety of cutbacks once you get closer to Harney. Lots of flowers along the way and a good view of rock formations similar to the Cathedral Spires. Looked like beetles killed off trees over some stretches, which took away the shade and made the trail less comfortable to hike.

The Peak itself offers some great views of Little Devils Tower and the surrounding area. Visibility was relatively limited because of haze, possibly from all the fires that were raging in Montana and states further west. A lot of hikers take the shorter, southern approach to the peak, so the top may be a bit more crowded. Did not see any water sources at the top, so pack accordingly.

Clay Brasher

19 Completed11 Reviews

Great Hike- one that everyone needs to do at some point!

Patty Kulick

1 Completed2 Reviews

My husband and I hiked this trail back in 2005. It was the longest hike I've done, it was nice and wide but a little busy. Once we got to the top it was wonderful with the most beautiful views I've seen. This place is a place I will remember forever! Loved every bit of it.

Patty Kulick

1 Completed2 Reviews

One of the best hikes I've done and very proud of, beautiful views.