Our first foray went so well that we headed out on Wednesday towards the Spearfish Canyon Scenic Byway (Spearfish, SD). The canyon has so many trails it would take us years to explore all of them but there’s one that we hiked a bit last fall and wanted to return to and go a bit further. This trail still had the effects of the record setting snowfall that occurred last October (dumping 4’+ of heavy wet white stuff on a very green leafed out landscape resulting in tree devastation that made our hiking a bit of a mountain goat experience). The Mickelson Trail had been cleared, this one had not.
Yes, I did find some wild pussy-willows amidst the winter leftovers…….the hope of spring!!!
We managed about 4&1/2 miles on that trail. Not too shabby. Again, the weather was just what was needed: like the previous hike, overcast, lower 50’s, drizzly.
Lest I forget, along the pathway we left a couple of “cairns” to mark our passing. Wha-a-a-at!? Yes, “cairns”. These are small rock towers, carefully constructed/balanced, that will be left along the trail, joining others left by previous hikers. Wikepedia offers a very in-depth explanation.
Before starting this hike, we had consumed another incredible breakfast at Cheyenne Crossing (some miles further up the canyon). My post, here, details an earlier visit and the photos would have been identical!!!!!! Yum! Hot Indian fry-bread with melty cream cheese frosting!
It seems that this monument became a financial burden and was gifted to the National Park system, which has done little to maintain it.
We’re eagerly anticipating a Fall return to the area and exploring the Black Hills’ trail system further.
‘Click’ on any of the photos to enlarge.