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Hiker's Itinerary

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Itinerary: One, two or three days+
Time Needed: About 8 hours each day
Best Time To Go: Start early in the day
Description:     Most of the itineraries listed in this section are directed toward motorists. It's possible however to spend a lot of time in the Black Hills and not do a lot of driving. This itinerary gives you one option.
    The Black Hills are a popular destination for hikers, even though they are not as famous as some of the other popular hiking areas of the U.S. Here's our suggestion for hikers:
    Day One: Hike Sylvan Lake are to Harney Peak and Little Devil's Tower. Custer State Park has an extensive trail system and maps are available at the entry kiosks. Trails range from easy to extremely difficult. The trail system to Harney Peak, Little Devil's Tower and the Cathedral Spires shouldn't be missed if you are a serious hiker. Be prepared for steep climbs and primative trails, however.
    Another Day: Hike the southern trails at Custer State Park. Many of these trails are less streneous than the mountain trails in the northern section of the park. However the rewards include up close and personal looks at some of the park's wildlife. But stay far away from buffalo.
    Another Day: Hike the Centennial Trail North of Hwy. 244. This is one of the longest trails in the Black Hills -- more than a 100 miles from Bear Butte State Park to the Hot Springs area. Pick a section, any section, and you will be well rewarded for your hiking efforts. The whole trail takes about a week to walk.
    Another Day: Hike Wind Cave National Park. These trails are for hikers who really want to be off by themselves. Many of the trails are little used so you can get out all day and not see another sole. Not bad, if that's what you want.
    Another Day: Hike the Black Elk Wilderness Area. These trails are near Mt. Rushmore and cover some of the most rugged terrain in the black hills. There are surpises galore, like unexpected water falls, and lots of wildlife -- if you know how to hike without making lots of noise. Several trails include spectacular overlooks. Terrain tends to be rocky.

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