If you’re looking for a short but fun hike in Spearfish Canyon, check out the Community Caves! This trail isn’t for everyone, but it’s fun and worth the effort if you can make the steep hike
Hey friends! Things have been kinda quiet here on the blog this summer, we’ve trying to spend more family time outdoors plus I’m working on an online fitness program that I’m going to launch next month (woohoo!!). Things have been fairly busy here so far with family things that my blog seems like it’s getting a summer vacation, too 😉
But not to worry! Even though I haven’t been posting as much (I’m hoping to get back to regular posting soon), I still have some fun things to share and I’m not going to completely stop posting this summer. I wanted to share one of the fun trips we took a few weeks ago to explore some new places in the Black Hills.
We love getting out and exploring new places. I believe that our bodies and minds really need the fresh air and green colors of the outdoors. We were created for adventure, exploring, and expanding our horizons!
One of our last trips to the Black Hills we decided to check out the Community Caves (also called Wild Cat Caverns). We had never been up here before, but I looked it up online and it is a local favorite. We got the directions and headed out!
Our hiking essentials:
- Camelbak hydration pack (I’m not sure that the one I use is for sale anymore, mine is a small one that works perfect for short hikes and bike rides)
- Takeya water bottle
- SPI belt
- Natural bug repellent
The trail to Community Caves is pretty short (maybe 1/3 mile), but it’s very steep once you get half way down the trail, so it’s a rigorous hike. Probably not a good one if you have bad knees, definitely not something you can take a stroller on. There is loose gravel and rocks toward the top so it’s tricky getting up the last bit, but even trickier getting down.
Check out other places to see and hiking in Wyoming, the Black Hills, and Montana:
- Garden Creek Falls, Casper, WY
- Crow Peak, Spearfish
- Ayres Natural Bridge
- Community Caves (Wildcat Caverns), Spearfish, SD
- The M Trail Missoula
- Devil’s Bathtub, Spearfish Canyon
- Crazy Horse Volksmarch
- Red Beds Trail, Devil’s Tower
- Trail End Museum, Sheridan
- Koltiska Pumpkin Patch, Sheridan
There’s a tiny waterfall (it’s a bit hard to see it in the photos) that makes some of the rocks on the trail slick, so watch for that as well. We all did pretty well on the trail, my son did fall on the way down, but nothing too bad. It is a beautiful area and well worth the effort!
Since the hike was pretty short, we also went to Devil’s Bathtub afterward to get more hiking in and take a dip in the pool if the kids wanted.
Directions to Community Caves
From Spearfish, turn down Spearfish Canyon Highway. You’ll only drive about 2.5 miles into the canyon before you see a small turnout on the right. You’ll park here and walk across the road to a small trail that begins to lead down away from the road.
Some of the directions we found said to look for mile marker 13, but there are hardly any mile markers at all in the canyon, so it’s better to set your odometer if you’ve never been there.
You’ll cross the stream (there is a little foot bridge to cross), and you’ll follow the trail up a gulch, which begins wide and starts to narrow as you go up. It gets steep and rocky, then the trail turns very steep with loose rocks and gravel. The trail is pretty short, but steep so it’s a good quick leg workout!
The waterfall is pretty small, but it freezes in winter, making it look pretty neat and something people say you can see from the road (I haven’t seen the frozen waterfall from the road yet).
Parts of the trail are wet near the top so it can get slick in some places
Sarah Jane Parker is the founder, recipe creator, and photographer behind The Fit Cookie. She’s a food allergy mom and healthy living blogger based in Wyoming. Sarah is also an ACSM Certified Personal Trainer, ACE Certified Health Coach, Revolution Running certified running coach, and an ACE Certified Fitness Nutrition Specialist