Explore the most popular trails in South Dakota with hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.




dogs on leash

kid friendly


nature trips



wild flowers

trail running


no dogs


mountain biking

dog friendly


horseback riding



cross country skiing


South Dakota Map

I’m on this trail a lot for running, walking and biking. It’s fantastic. I just wish the city would be more consistent with bathroom quality and placement, and that they’d open them earlier in the mornings for early-rising runners.

17 hours ago

The best part of lovers leap trail was the views from the top. Wow!!!! If you want to shorten your hike, when you get to the split go left. When you get to the viewpoint turn and go back. By going right you will see a cool stream, perfect for dipping your toes. We saw a deer in this portion. There is a lot of poison ivy on the stream side of the trail. Wear long socks.

17 hours ago

With every step, you felt closer to Mother Earth. The stream crossings, the rolling prairie filled with wild flowers, cactus, grasshoppers, were a sight to behold. We saw lots of prairie dogs and heard coyotes in the distance. Buffalo were in the area but we didn’t see any. The warm breezes were so beautiful and peaceful. A comfortable hike. Just over 2 miles. Cannot rate easy because of the hills, and some lack of shade.

17 hours ago

The views of the needles were stunning on this hike. Wildflowers, stream crossing and spots to climb rocks on your way up a moderate hike. Lined with wild raspberries, it made it easy to stop and take a look around you. When you get to the trail signs, you are surrounded by granite needles. Meandering is highly recommended.

Started from Willow Creek trailhead in horse camp vice the recommended start here. Note that the transition from trail 8 to Lost Cabin (trail 2?) is not marked, there is only a slight foot path that will lead you to a turnaround, and from there you turn left and jump on the trail. I had a good time on this hike, but I bumped it down to a 3 due to trail condition. Parts of Lost Cabin were so heavily grown over that it felt like bushwacking. Same with 9 north, though not nearly as bad. Hiked up and ran down as able in 6 hours. Start early to avoid the worst of the heat. No water sources except streams where you need to treat. Go upcreek to avoid the worst of the horse contamination. Have fun out there.

Stunning trail! I’m very uncoordinated, so the boulders near the water gave me some issues, but there are plenty of handrails to hold onto. Many water crossings and great views. Variations in terrain make this trail a lot of fun.

Awesome short trail. Great to get out and make some memories. Lots of cool places to get to off the main trail as well - just watch for rattlesnakes! We didn't see any but there are plenty of signs. Trail was a bit steep and there is loose gravel so it can be a little slick, but I never felt unsafe. Very cool. Would do again.

Great trail and amazing views, particularly atop Little Devil.

hiked it in August on 103 degree afternoon. no shade, still loved it. great landscape, incredible photos.

Only 2.8 miles even says that at the trail head and is listed as strenuous. A good trail did it counter clockwise and that is definitely the more difficult way. Not a good trail if you have little ones and dogs should NOT be allowed!

Absolutely the best trail system in the world.

Great trail but it is a bit difficult on long uphill climbs in some areas. The views are really awesome of the river. Beware as some paths stray from the trail.

Gorgeous scenery!

3 days ago

Beautiful scenery; hands down one of my favorite trails in South Dakota!

Beautiful view at top!

Beautiful Scenery!

Did this trail in reverse, up 9 and down 4. #9 was wide and in great condition; amazing views. #4 was narrow and less traveled but with some beautiful views of the Cathedral Spires. Took it slow and easy with my 4 year old hiking alongside. Round trip was about 4 hours.

3 days ago

Very short trail. I hiked it together with Notch trail.

3 days ago

The trail is short but very steep and slippery, so be careful when hiking. On the top of the trail you can have a different angel to see the badlands along the road. It's beautiful.

3 days ago

Just a study of the fossil and geologic age. Not a scenic trail. Good for kids to learn.

You can see the cliff like a bowl and notice the abundant vegetation induced by the water flow down from the cliff. Besides there is not much to see.

3 days ago

A interesting hike, although it's not for seeing badlands. It's so dry in the trail. I thought I was in another planet.

3 days ago

A nice hike there. The field in the end of the trail is great. Another thing impressed me is the ladder in the trail. It's exciting and funny.

Beautiful short hike to really immerse yourself more in the beauty of Spearfish Canyon. We encountered numerous folks en route some which were motorcyclists taking in the beauty as well. There were surface changes of flat areas, some roots thru wooded areas, a few logs to climb over and some rocks which were in the stream. Your basically following along the stream bed with crossing back and forth over the stream. The crossings are a good test of balance if you walk on the logs and rocks. Careful! As the rocks CAN BE SLIPPERY! A couple folks actually slipped and fell. The stream is shallow and at the end I waded into the “bathtub”. The water IS cold and I’m guessing the temp was around 70 degrees. Maybe colder? ( I’m basing my guess on a spring i enjoyed in Florida called Devil’s Den which is a year round temp of 72. )

Nice easy hike to end the day. Smooth wide pathway and some decking at the falls area for viewing. Pleasant and easy to access from the Spearfish Canyon Lodge.

One of the best hikes in the Black Hills.

Majestic view of the Presidents. Easy and paved with a few stairs and wooden decking. Unfortunately at time of my visit part of the loop was under renovations. August 8, 2018

Great trail! Followed water the entire time. We had lunch at the water, it was beautiful time!

Challenging but worth it!

6 days ago

Worth it.

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