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curtis_g


Jul 14, 2008, 4:53 PM
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The Black Hills
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The girlfriend and I are driving to Mt Rushmore from Chicago at the end of this summer and I'm turning to my RC.com community for some help. Now, I actually vouched for you all already and told her that I could count on you all for some good information, so please come through for me. Here goes:

In the black hills, we're looking for 2-4 days of backpacking and climbing offering inspiring summits, exposure, the works. Anything from 5.easy to 5.10. Single or multipitch, but nothing +5 pitch.

I was thinking about the back of rushmore for the cool and convenience factor, but I really don't know if that's quality climbing. I'm also looking into the rushmore region, not 3 hrs. cross-state. Unfortunately in the entirety of S.D. travel packets and adventure guides there is but one climbing guide service advertised, but I don't need a guide.

Is there anything I should not come home from SD without seeing? A favorite alpine moderate? A beautiful and convenient mountain vista? A brook-babbling valley campsite? A jaw dropping summit?

Being college students we're also looking for a cheap yet secure place to park and set up camp en-route or when not on the trail.

Thanks for any and all help.


chossmonkey


Jul 15, 2008, 1:43 PM
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Re: [curtis_g] The Black Hills [In reply to]
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You are in luck. There aren't any 5+ pitch routes in the Hills.

A ways back behind Mt.Rushmore there is some good climbing. Right behind Rushmore is off limits.

Hill City has a gear store and you can likely find guide books and beta there.

Spearfish Canyon has some good limestone sport routes if you get burnt out on the granite.

Check out Devils Tower, it isn't that far.

In the Hills check out routes in the Cathedral Spires for some exposure. Some of the smaller roadside spires can offer pretty good exposure as well with their tiny summits.


chossmonkey


Jul 15, 2008, 1:44 PM
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And stop in the Badlands on your way to or from the Hills.


r0cker


Jul 15, 2008, 4:08 PM
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Re: [curtis_g] The Black Hills [In reply to]
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You can definitely hit up Sylvan Lake. That is at the entrance to the Needles. Spearfish Canyon is mostly pretty hard routes so I wouldn't waste time in there (Although it is absolutely beautiful if you wanted to drive through). When are you going out there? I am in South Carolina right now, but will be back the end of August. I go to School about 45 minutes from Mount Rushmore.

Are you wanting Sport or Trad climbing? I would hit up Custer State park for some camping. You'll probably get to see some buffalo roaming around and that is always cool. As for hiking, I'm not quite sure. I can check into some stuff for you though, if you would like.


Partner rgold


Jul 15, 2008, 9:11 PM
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The Needles (Custer State Park) is the trad climbing center. Climbs are relatively short; two (relatively short) pitches is pretty much the max, but you will discover that the adventure factor is very high. The Rushomore area and Spearfish Canyon are sport climbing.

The best information about the Needles in print is out of print: Paul Piana's guidebook Touch the Sky.

There is, I think, a relatively recent guidebook which is totally inadequate. At present, the best source of information seems to be Mountain Project.

Edit: A picture (from a long time ago) of Matt Hale on Cerberus (The Tricouni Nail)




(This post was edited by rgold on Jul 15, 2008, 9:20 PM)


curt


Jul 15, 2008, 9:29 PM
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Emancipation Rockphormation (behind Rushmore) does have some excellent multi-pitch routes put up by Mike Engle and Vern Phinney. The Cathedral group and 10 pins areas have excellent shorter routes--although (as rgold noted) these are more sporting than sport. There are also excellent routes near Sylvan Lake in the Outlets and on Photographer's Peak.

Excellent classic and historic boulder problems can be found on the Sylvan Lake boulder. It's an amazing area--have fun.

Curt


curt


Jul 15, 2008, 9:31 PM
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rgold wrote:

Edit: A picture (from a long time ago) of Matt Hale on Cerberus (The Tricouni Nail)


One of my favorite routes there, Rich--nice photo.

Curt


curtis_g


Jul 16, 2008, 8:13 AM
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Re: [r0cker] The Black Hills [In reply to]
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r0cker wrote:
You can definitely hit up Sylvan Lake. That is at the entrance to the Needles. Spearfish Canyon is mostly pretty hard routes so I wouldn't waste time in there (Although it is absolutely beautiful if you wanted to drive through). When are you going out there? I am in South Carolina right now, but will be back the end of August. I go to School about 45 minutes from Mount Rushmore.

Are you wanting Sport or Trad climbing? I would hit up Custer State park for some camping. You'll probably get to see some buffalo roaming around and that is always cool. As for hiking, I'm not quite sure. I can check into some stuff for you though, if you would like.

Yea, I'm getting some good starting info as to where to climb but it's be nice to also know of a cool peak in the area to backpack to (say 25 mile max roundtrip).


chossmonkey


Jul 16, 2008, 9:14 AM
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Harney Peak is an easy day trip. I'm sure there are others that would be longer. Check out Summitpost.com they are a bit more into the hiking/peak bagging than this site.


curt


Jul 16, 2008, 3:48 PM
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chossmonkey wrote:
Harney Peak is an easy day trip. I'm sure there are others that would be longer. Check out Summitpost.com they are a bit more into the hiking/peak bagging than this site.

Yes, Harney Peak is an excellent hike. The normal trailhead is right off the Sylvan Lake parking lot.

Curt


curtis_g


Jul 19, 2008, 10:23 AM
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Re: [curt] The Black Hills [In reply to]
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curt wrote:
chossmonkey wrote:
Harney Peak is an easy day trip. I'm sure there are others that would be longer. Check out Summitpost.com they are a bit more into the hiking/peak bagging than this site.

Yes, Harney Peak is an excellent hike. The normal trailhead is right off the Sylvan Lake parking lot.

Curt

Thanks for the suggestion, I've planned on hiking in from the north (5 miles and going past Elkhorn mountain, I think). Then coming through to Little Devil's Tower and back up and around north to the start (Willow Creek Rec Area, right off of HWY 244).


What I'm looking for now is some favorite 1-3 pitch moderates in the Mt.Rushmore area as well as in the needles. Looking for exposure and sport climb suggestions as well as trad. I'd just rather not open the guide book and point to a climb.

What's epic, what shouldn't I miss?

Thanks everyone for all the help so far.


curt


Jul 19, 2008, 11:13 AM
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Tricouni Nail (photo above)

and

Four Little Fishes

Curt


curtis_g


Jul 23, 2008, 8:13 AM
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Alright, Hill City gear shop for a recent but poor guidebook. Or I'll check like Amazon.com for an old but good guidebook.

Any other suggestions for classics behind rushmore? I'm checking mountain project now.

What are the classic problems at sylvan lake?

Thanks everyone, so far.


chossmonkey


Jul 23, 2008, 10:01 AM
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At Rushmore there is a route called Evergreen and is about 9+. Its on Pine Tree rock. To the right of that is a similar route that is 10ish. Its a nice summit and double rope rap off the top.

At Sylvan Lake on the Campground Boulder there are some good boulder problems. They are pretty tall but have good landings. I think you can TR them pretty easy.

I really wouldn't call any guidebook for the Hills 'good'. It helps add to the adventure though.


curtis_g


Jul 23, 2008, 11:11 AM
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Thanks a lot. Mountain Project seems pretty golden.


curtis_g


Aug 2, 2008, 8:48 PM
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Looking for a guidebook with good maps to the various sections of crag in the black hills.

Is there anything to order online?
or
What gear store do I stop in at where for which book?

I realize you all say not much is good, what's recommended?


chossmonkey


Aug 5, 2008, 1:01 PM
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Check out http://www.chesslerbooks.com/...ult.asp?idAffiliate=

The gear shop (Hill City Sports?) in Hill City should have some books. The staff there should be able to point you toward the best one for your needs. I've mostly used the "Poor Person" ones. They kinda look like they were printed at kinkos or someplace similar. Nothing fancy.

I think there is a nicer version still in print for Rushmore. I think the author is Phinny or something like that. Pianna put together Touch the Sky but is likely out of print. He also had a PP book for Rushmore which may or may not be in print.

There is a new book out for the Hills, but I wouldn't spend the money for it. Its a nice book, but I think I would rather use the hand drawn books. I just flipped through it at a shop and wasn't very impressed. Same routes as the cheapos, I think maybe less, but in a prettier format. YMMV.

Larry (Shaffer ?)a.k.a. Scary Larry was supposed to be coming out with a book years ago, but as far as I know it hasn't happened and may never. If is out I might consider getting that one. From what I heard it was supposed to be pretty complete.


curtis_g


Aug 5, 2008, 3:03 PM
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ah, finally a reply. Thanks a ton, you were a huge help.


chossmonkey


Aug 5, 2008, 5:59 PM
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curtis_g wrote:
ah, finally a reply. Thanks a ton, you were a huge help.
Contrary to popular belief, some of us do climb.Wink


curt


Aug 5, 2008, 6:27 PM
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chossmonkey wrote:
Check out http://www.chesslerbooks.com/...ult.asp?idAffiliate=

The gear shop (Hill City Sports?) in Hill City should have some books. The staff there should be able to point you toward the best one for your needs. I've mostly used the "Poor Person" ones. They kinda look like they were printed at kinkos or someplace similar. Nothing fancy.

I think there is a nicer version still in print for Rushmore. I think the author is Phinny or something like that. Pianna put together Touch the Sky but is likely out of print. He also had a PP book for Rushmore which may or may not be in print.

There is a new book out for the Hills, but I wouldn't spend the money for it. Its a nice book, but I think I would rather use the hand drawn books. I just flipped through it at a shop and wasn't very impressed. Same routes as the cheapos, I think maybe less, but in a prettier format. YMMV.

Larry (Shaffer ?)a.k.a. Scary Larry was supposed to be coming out with a book years ago, but as far as I know it hasn't happened and may never. If is out I might consider getting that one. From what I heard it was supposed to be pretty complete.

The gear shop in Hill City is called Granite Sports and is an excellent shop. They do have Vern Phinney's guide to Rushmore, which is a good reference to that area. Among the best routes in the Rushmore area is Star Dancer, which I would say is a five-star 5.8 route.

Curt


dlintz


Aug 6, 2008, 9:56 PM
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Re: [curtis_g] The Black Hills [In reply to]
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curtis_g wrote:
curt wrote:
chossmonkey wrote:
Harney Peak is an easy day trip. I'm sure there are others that would be longer. Check out Summitpost.com they are a bit more into the hiking/peak bagging than this site.

Yes, Harney Peak is an excellent hike. The normal trailhead is right off the Sylvan Lake parking lot.

Curt

Thanks for the suggestion, I've planned on hiking in from the north (5 miles and going past Elkhorn mountain, I think). Then coming through to Little Devil's Tower and back up and around north to the start (Willow Creek Rec Area, right off of HWY 244).


What I'm looking for now is some favorite 1-3 pitch moderates in the Mt.Rushmore area as well as in the needles. Looking for exposure and sport climb suggestions as well as trad. I'd just rather not open the guide book and point to a climb.

What's epic, what shouldn't I miss?

Thanks everyone for all the help so far.

Nothing to add except you'll find plenty of exposure on the classics. Have fun.

d.


mare0064


Jun 9, 2009, 9:37 AM
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my must-do list for the moderate climber...

Rushmore (i use vernon phineys guide)
Gossomer - 5.7 sport (monster)
X marks the spot - 5.10 sport w/ a little gear (SS)
Pointy Little Devil - 5.8 sport (monster)
Baba Cool - 5.9 sport (CB)

Needles (used flashy full color guide...there is a new conn adventure climbs guide with all this and a shitton more)
Spire 3 - 5.8 trad (cathedral spires)
link-up West Gruesome, South Tower, Spire 4 - 5.7 Trad


(This post was edited by mare0064 on Jun 9, 2009, 9:43 AM)


curt


Jun 9, 2009, 10:41 AM
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mare0064 wrote:
my must-do list for the moderate climber...

Rushmore (i use vernon phineys guide)
Gossomer - 5.7 sport (monster)
X marks the spot - 5.10 sport w/ a little gear (SS)
Pointy Little Devil - 5.8 sport (monster)
Baba Cool - 5.9 sport (CB)

Needles (used flashy full color guide...there is a new conn adventure climbs guide with all this and a shitton more)
Spire 3 - 5.8 trad (cathedral spires)
link-up West Gruesome, South Tower, Spire 4 - 5.7 Trad

Good information, no doubt. but the OP was going there at the end of the summer of 2008.

Curt


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