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Ascent of Little Devils Tower on 2016-10-14

Climber: William Musser

Other People:Solo Ascent
Only Party on Mountain
Date:Friday, October 14, 2016
Ascent Type:Successful Summit Attained
    Motorized Transport to Trailhead:Car
Peak:Little Devils Tower
    Location:USA-South Dakota
    Elevation:6960 ft / 2121 m

Ascent Trip Report

Dave Covill's report is spot on. I would only add that if you stay on the blue dot path you do not need to use your hands at all it is all class 2 and class 2+. There are many side paths and clefts that you can take other than the well marked blue dot trail and then you can get on some fun class 3. The granite has much eroded pegmatite feldspar bumps that make for ridiculously clean foot holds and the material is about as easy to climb in full hiking boots as you are going to find. The trail maker did an excellent job of finding the one clean cleft up through what would be otherwise class 4 and 5 walls and it makes for a very fun and surprising easy summit. The views are very rewarding and I was treated to more mountain goats on the way up. Karen stayed at the saddle trailhead junction looking at the goats and I did not want to leave her for long so I moved swiftly up the trail covering it from junction to the summit in 12 minutes and down in 10 minutes. With picture and top time I was gone 25 minutes. The entire side trip if you take your time and enjoy the hike more and do not rush the climb like I had to would be a nice hour for the 0.8 mile Round Trip.

Then we hiked all the way back to our car at Sylvan Pond.
Summary Total Data
    Total Elevation Gain:515 ft / 156 m
    Total Elevation Loss:1050 ft / 319 m
    Round-Trip Distance:2.3 mi / 3.7 km
    Grade/Class:1,2, 2+ with class 3
    Quality:7 (on a subjective 1-10 scale)
    Route Conditions:
Maintained Trail, Scramble
    Gear Used:
Ski Poles
    Weather:Pleasant, Very Windy, Clear
65F very windy gust to 50 mph
Ascent Statistics
    Gain on way in:335 ft / 102 m
        Gain Breakdown:Net: 280 ft / 85 m; Extra: 55 ft / 16m
    Loss on way in:55 ft / 16 m
    Distance:0.4 mi / 0.6 km
    Route:Little Devil Tower Trail to scamper
    Start Trailhead:saddle TH junction of #4 & Devil Tower  6680 ft / 2036 m
    Time:12 Minutes
Descent Statistics
    Loss on way out:995 ft / 303 m
        Loss Breakdown:Net: 815 ft / 249 m; Extra: 180 ft / 54m
    Gain on way out:180 ft / 54 m
    Distance:1.9 mi / 3.1 km
    Route:Trail #4
    End Trailhead:Sylvan Lake  6145 ft / 1872 m
    Time:10 Minutes
Ascent Part of Trip: SD HP harney

Complete Trip Sequence:
OrderPeak/PointDateGain
1Black Elk Peak2016-10-14 a1656 ft / 505 m
2Little Devils Tower2016-10-14 b515 ft / 157 m
Total Trip Gain: 2171 ft / 662 m    Total Trip Loss: 2171 ft / 662 m



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