Wednesday, July 29, 2015

Fantasy Could Never be so Giving.

Fair warning: There are a lot of photos in this post. I'll try to keep the word count down, so it's not ridiculously long, though.

We woke up a little later on Friday and planned to take a day off from the bikes. Like I said yesterday, I thought the Mickelson Trail would be the highlight of the trip. Not that it was disappointing, but so many other things were so much more amazing than I imagined, that Mickelson Trail had so much competition and I would say Friday was one of my favorite days of our vacation, but definitely my favorite in Custer State Park.

First we went to Cathedral Spires and wandered around there. It's an easy, but beautiful hike. You can actually crawl around on the cool rock formations.

From there we headed to Sylvan Lake to access the best trail systems. The drive there was jaw dropping in itself.

We originally planned to swim in Sylvan Lake, but it was too cold outside for that to be comfortable. Weird. Especially since it was over a 105 in Iowa with the heat index that same day.

 We had a wonderful hike/trail run. We would run for a while and then stop when we either saw something cool, were going up a hill that was too steep, or the terrain was too treacherous.

There was a threat of rain most of the day. By the time we got to the top of Harney Peak, it got windy and started raining. Luckily, we had eaten our lunch by the watering hole first, and then were able to take refuge in the look-out castle thing for a bit before heading to the next trail system.

We took the Little Devil's Tower trail after we checked out a tributary trail and I FINALLY found a place where I could get on the internet. Yeah. All that majestic beauty all around me and I'm squinting at  my phone. Lame-ass.

 The Little Devil's Tower Trail was a little more technical than Harney Peak.

 We were both so happy we brought decent hiking boots. We really needed comfortable and non-slip shoes.

I love it when your trail is basically a crevice in a rock.

We came out in a little different area than where we thought we should be, but we found the right trail and followed it back to Sylvan Lake. All-in-all, we were out hiking, running and playing on the trails for 5 or 6  hours. We saw rain and sun and some lightning and had a really lovely adventure.

Of course, by the time we got to our car, tried once more to swim, before we realized it was still way too cold, and changed clothes, we were starving.

We headed to the town of Custer and wandered around the street, before we found a great brew pub. We ate good food, drank good South Dakota craft beer and otherwise had a wonderful Friday night.

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