We live right on the edge of the Black Hills National Forest, with our own property to hike on, as well as many other gorgeous hikes within a (relatively) short drive from our house. It is pretty easy to get stuck around here and the southern Hills for our excursions, and not venture too far from north. So I was glad to finally make it up towards Spearfish to hike the Crow Peak Trail, a roughly 6 mile out-and-back trail to the top of a beautiful little mountain, with gorgeous views of the surrounding area, including Bear Butte.
The trail is well maintained and pretty much impossible to lose sight of. It is a steady uphill climb, steeper towards the top, with a handful of switchbacks and sprawling views from open areas on the way up. In the lower elevations of the trail, there are some good unobstructed views of Crow Peak, which I always enjoy. It is fun to be able to glimpse the destination. In a few places, the trail traverses steep, rock-covered slopes, and standing dead are evidence of not-so-long-ago fire activity. As a proper destination hike should, it boasts incredible views from the summit.We brought a picnic and our hammocks, and enjoyed an uncharacteristically leisurely lunch on the edge of a cliff, with Bear Butte visible in the distance. It was a bit chilly, but so beautiful, and hard to make ourselves head back down to “the real world.” Amazing how excursions into God’s glorious Creation help to put life into perspective, as worries and cares fade into the distance. It is a good thing I have a sense of personal responsibility, otherwise I would just quit everything I’m doing and live in the woods with my hammock.