The Cathedral Spires in South Dakota are an impressive formation of granite towers, spires, and pinnacles located within the Needles of the Black Hills.
As one of the most recognizable features of the Black Hills National Forest, these giant granite formations stand as a reminder of the mountain–building forces that occurred over millennia.
The Cathedral Spires Summit Trail takes hikers from the nearby Sylvan Lake area to the top of the Needles, which is more than 7,700 feet above sea level. The unique rock formations of the Cathedral Spires show evidence of a violent geologic history.
Close examination of the granite reveals the presence of many faults and fractures, along with evidence of the powerful ice, wind, and water forces that created the formations. Atop the Needles, the view of the Cathedral Spires is breathtaking. While having lunch or taking in the views, it‘s possible to not only imagine the powerful forces that shaped the landscape, but to also appreciate the beauty created by these forces.
Whether visitors desire a challenging hike or a quiet picnic, Cathedral Spires has something to offer.
The area serves as a reminder of our state’s unique geologic history and of the beauty of the Black Hills.