Tuesday, October 4, 2016

A Sunday Hike

Today, on the 3rd anniversary of The Big Snow, I'd rather talk about this last weekend.

Sunday was the most perfect day for a hike.

I am a creature of habit, and as such I aimed for Sylvan Lake.

Instead of Black Elk, though, I had my sights set on Sunday Gulch.

The story goes that the wives of miners in the area a hundred and twenty years ago would venture down the gulch for their Sunday walks. As such, this is one of the older known trails in the area.

It's also one of my favorites.

The trail takes you alongside enormous granite walls...

... and right down a creek bed that doubles as the trail.

The handrail is fun, too.

The three-mile loop has a fair bit of elevation change (initial drop is around 400-450 feet); combined with the creek bed and the climb back up, it's one of the relatively few Black Hills trails with a "strenuous" rating. As such, it also attracts less foot traffic than the neighboring trails in the Black Elk Wilderness.

I have to admit, I love the solitude, especially on a particularly gorgeous October Sunday. While it would be wonderful for more people to see this kind of place, it's rather excellent to have it to yourself.

It was a perfect Sunday afternoon.

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