|Sylvan Lake is a boulder lined beauty in the Black Hills.|
|Sunday Gulch trail starts behind the Sylvan Lake dam, |
an interesting feature itself as it is built between existing giant granite boulders.
|Metal railings mark the trail as it descends into the gulch between enormous granite walls.|
|Within moments the trail was completely overtaken by the fast flowing creek.|
Once we determined that we'd probably have to get our feet wet we decided to hike the trail in reverse, saving the fording for the end...hoping that the force of the water was not too extreme or that we could find a way over the boulders to bypass the water...if all else failed the hike was short enough that we could retrace our steps!
|Now heading clockwise on the trail, we admired the granitic core of the Black Hills jutting out of the lush forest.|
|Sunday Gulch drops away from us, lined with granite boulders many stories tall.|
|Spring bloom is just beginning in South Dakota.|
|The trail dropped steeply through dense forest to the bottom of the gulch.|
|We were thrilled to see this bridge once the trail started to head up the ravine...|
|Soon, boulders began to enclose the canyon and metal railings and cement stairs helped us through difficult places.|
|Hans is dwarfed by the granite walls surrounding us.|
|Uh oh...missing bridge!|
|Normally these rocks would be easy to walk across, not this year!|
|I guess it's time to get my feet wet!|
At this point Hans decided to find a way to bypass the trail because he didn't want to submerge his new hiking shoes. He ended up getting a full body workout doing some major boulder scrambling...but he did keep his shoes dry! Since I was wearing old shoes I was thrilled to grab onto the railings and work my way up the creek/trail...it was exhilarating!
|I knew I was near the top once I saw other people contemplating the flow!|
|Scrambling up this trail was a blast...I was sorry when it was over!|
|Sylvan Lake dam.|
|That's the dam nestled between the boulders.|
Sunday Gulch would be an extraordinary hike any time, but this spring it's truly a unique experience!