Midwestern Mountains: A Peek at South Dakota's Black Hills - Page 2
Photo by Action Sports Images
The Centennial Trail traverses over 111 miles of easy to moderate terrain, ranging between 3200 and 5600 feet in elevation, and is accessible from Sturgis, on the northeast side of the Black Hills. Other notable trails include the Victoria Lakes trail system outside of Rapid City; the Flume Trail, which runs 15 miles from Sherian Lake to Rockerville; the Deerfield Trail, which intersects the Centennial and serves as part of the Black Hills 100 course; and the Old Baldy/Rimrock/Little Spearfish Loops, all shorter but moderate-difficulty trails south of Spearfish, north of the Black Hills.
The Black Elk Wilderness, next to Mount Rushmore, features several excellent trail offerings as well, including the difficult Willow Creek/Harney Peak Route, which climbs to South Dakota’s highest peak at 7200 feet.
Note that the Black Hills is a popular area for recreational ATV use, and that one 14-mile stretch of the Centennial Trail is ATV accessible, and thus wider and rockier than the rest of the trail. ATV users are instructed to yield to hikers, runners and those on horseback, but stay aware of your surroundings to avoid getting in each others’ way.
* The Black Hills 100 Mile, 100K and 50 Mile is held the same weekend as Western States in June and features an out-and-back course on the Centennial Trail, starting and ending on a track in Sturgis. (www.blackhills100.com)
* The Lean Horse 100 Mile, 50 Mile and 50K is held in August on the wider Mickelson Trail, starting in Hot Springs. (www.leanhorsehundred.com)
* The Mickelson Trail also hosts the Deadwood-Mickelson Traill Marathon (deadwoodmickelsontrailmarathon.com) in June and the Run Crazy Horse Marathon in September (runcrazyhorse.com).
* The Black Hills Trail Running Series showcases several local trails from May through November. Find more information here: bhrctrails.com.