Lovers' Leap Trail

MODERATE 289 reviews
#4 of 15 trails in

Lovers' Leap Trail is a 4.2 mile heavily trafficked loop trail located near Custer, South Dakota that features beautiful wild flowers and is rated as moderate. The trail is primarily used for hiking, nature trips, and bird watching and is best used from April until October. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.

Distance: 4.2 miles Elevation Gain: 626 feet Route Type: Loop

dogs on leash

hiking

nature trips

bird watching

forest

views

wild flowers

wildlife

hiking
9 days ago

Took the trail counterclockwise and descended down the steepest portion towards the (our) end. Good choice. Stream crossings all have very nice timbers to walk over. Trail is wide enough to stay clear of most vegetation. Recent wet weather left a few damp spots, but the tennis shoes stayed dry. Beautiful little scramble near the middle to climb up onto the Leap. Only wildlife seen were squirrels, chipmunks, and two terrified garter snakes — no mountain goats :(

hiking
rocky
9 days ago

hiking
1 month ago

So pretty! Start and finish are hard but the rest is smooth sailing.

hiking
1 month ago

The trail head is behind the 2 room school house, we parked at the school house. There was a buffalo in that area as well. We went to the right as suggested by many reviews, I recommend going left for less up hill trekking and to get to the Lover's Leap boulders early in the hike. There are at least 12 creek crossings. I agree that the view is worth the climb up the boulders, it isn't too difficult of a climb. There is a sign at the boulders, but it doesn't mention that it's the spot for the leap. I recommend taking plenty of water, at least 1 trekking pole and a snack to enjoy.

hiking
1 month ago

My forth hike this weekend and it may be my favorite. I started clockwise to get the assent out of the way. tough hike for about 15-20 minutes. the remaining hike is relatively easy, although rugged in some areas. My favorite part may be the portion hiking along the stream. It sounded wonderful and refreshing. 2hours start to finish.

recorded Lovers' Leap Trail

hiking
bridge out
bugs
no shade
over grown
rocky
1 month ago

recorded Recording - Aug 31, 12:16 PM

hiking
1 month ago

Great trail with great scenic views. Going counterclockwise the first part has multiple beautiful creek crossings. And Lovers Leap has great scenic views of Harney Peak and other landmarks in the area. Saw a mountain goat and lots of other wildlife.

hiking
1 month ago

Took us 2.5hrs to do the loop with 2 big dogs and a baby in a backpack carrier. We went clockwise to get the steep climb over with... that first mile was pretty intense! After we reached the ridge it was easy from there. Saw lots of deer, no snakes. The views were amazing and worth the climb up the rocks! Only 2 creek crossings didn't have boards in place as bridges, but you can hop on the exposed rocks and downed trees.

hiking
1 month ago

Lots of wildlife and surprises. Creek crossings, deer, mountain sheep, snakes. Great hike and scenic at top. Definitely hike the boulders at lovers leap. It’s worth it.

hiking
1 month ago

Awesome trail but lots of snakes this time of year.

hiking
1 month ago

Nice hike bordering on easy. Kind of steep initially 10 + easy creek crossings most with log bridge

hiking
1 month ago

beautiful lookout!

Nice hike, great scenery. I went right (counterclockwise). The first mile paralleled the road and camp grounds, got that over. For me, the second mile was the prettiest. Beautiful canyon with a stream you crossed over multiple times. Mile 3 was climbing up onto the ridge and along it to Lovers' Leap and great views. Mile 4 was along the ridge and then dropping down to the trailhead.

hiking
2 months ago

A lovely trail with not too much elevation change; it’s definitely family-friendly. A short incline takes you to the initial loop — I’d recommend turning right so that you reach the views (up the rocks! Do it!) more towards the end of the trail rather than towards the beginning. Watch your step at the lowest points of the trail by the creek; there is plentiful poison ivy. We hiked this in about an hour and 20 mins at a good clip.

hiking
2 months ago

Really great trail that takes you through beautiful forestry and has a great view. The trail is a bit overgrown so it might be wise to wear long pants. There are several creek crossings but there are wooden planks to get across. I would recommend going right around the loop as it takes you up a more gradual incline, whereas left is very steep and rocky going up, but going left gets you to the overlook quicker. Overall a beautiful trail!

hiking
2 months ago

Didn’t do much of the trail but it seems like a good loop.

hiking
2 months ago

Nice, moderately challenging trail with an abundance of wild flowers. Well signed so easy to stay on the trail. No real impressive viewing areas but a very scenic trail nonetheless.

hiking
2 months ago

Best smelling trail ever. The aroma of pine was fantastic. Hiked turning right at the fork. The first third or so runs parallel to the highway and is quite noisy. The other two-thirds is very quiet and peaceful. The crickets smell nice.

hiking
2 months ago

This was a fun one. Moderately challenging. Have to watch out for poison ivy as the trail does get narrow in the overgrown weeded parts. I did not get any poison ivy. We saw one Caribou and that was pretty cool. We climbed up on the rocks where the lovers leap was and that was an amazing and breathtaking view.

hiking
2 months ago

Tracked the loop at 5.21 miles. Hiked counter clockwise per some recommendations and that worked great. Not sure right or left would be easier or harder? Amazing views and fun crossing the creek many times. Didn’t see any wildlife sadly. Crossed paths with 3 sets of people on a Monday mid day. Beautiful hike!!

hiking
3 months ago

Amazing view at the top. We recommend taking the right side of the split. watch for the abundant poison ivy near the creek. We got to stop and watch a buffalo eat just off the trail. We also spotted some long horn sheep on the next peak.

hiking
3 months ago

❤️❤️❤️❤️

hiking
3 months ago

nice trail with some great views.

hiking
3 months ago

good hike for adults. Taking little kids under 8 will give you a bunch of grumbles and gripes. Beautiful views though, watch out for the poison ivy on the end of the trail.

hiking
3 months ago

Great trail. Saw a buffalo and Big Horn Sheep on the route. Followed a stream for some distance and had to cross it in several places. There were plank bridges in each place we needed to cross. One of my favorite trails in the Black Hills

Made it in 1 mile to trail challenge Medallion.

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