Enjoy a quick hike down to one of the Black Hills hidden gems. Enjoy swimming and cliff jumping, as long as the water is warm enough!

While making your way to the parking area, you'll keep right for the most part. You'll also need a high clearance vehicle or the patience to drive very slowly. The dirt road to the trailhead is full of dips, holes, rocks, and essentially could be a close relative of off roading. If you do not have an SUV or pickup - that's fine, just do NOT and I repeat, do NOT, attempt to make it to the actual parking area. Park your vehicle before you get there and walk the rest of the way. There is a HUGE dip that small cars will not make it over. I Fiat get stuck in that dip once and would not recommend smaller cars attempting that portion of this adventure :)

With that being said - once you park the hike itself is pretty simple. You'll head down the trail until you get to Battle Creek. The most difficult part of this will be the pile of rock and deadfall that you have to maneuver down at the very base of the trail. When you get down to Battle Creek, you'll take yourself left and continue about 15 minutes to the waterfall.

Once you arrive there are plenty of rocks to sunbathe, you can jump off the waterfall, or just swim at the base (you can hike/climb down to the swimming pool if you don't want to jump off). With cliff jumping, please be aware of any rocks or hazards of places you aren't familiar with BEFORE jumping.

When you decide to make your way back up to the parking area, the trail will be the same. The easiest way to remember where to turn to start going upward is by the big flat rock on your right hand side. When I did this hike most recently, someone had spray painted arrows to keep you on the right path but chances are those will fade over time. 

When you've finished this adventure, if you're looking for a bite to eat, stop at the Gaslight in Rockerville. They never disappoint! 

Note: Dogs are welcome to be off leash on this hike, however, make sure the water isn't super high if they want to cross at the waterfall. One of my pups went over the waterfall a couple years ago because he lost his footing in the current - he's fine, but it was very scary!

Pack List

  • Sturdy sandals
  • Water if you're planning on spending some time there
  • Camera
  • Swim suit
  • Hat and sunscreen - especially if you're going in the warmer months!
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RT Distance 0.3 Miles
Activities Chillin, Photography, Swimming, Hiking
Skill Level Beginner
Season Spring, Summer, Autumn
Trail Type Out-and-Back
Features
Dog Friendly
Family Friendly
Food Nearby
Forest
Groups
River
Scenic
Waterfall
Wildflowers
Cliff Jumping
Swimming Hole

Reviews

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Overall rating: 

Great Way To Spend A Day

The other reviewers are pretty much right on, this is one of my favorite places in the Black Hills. A couple words of caution - first, the water is really cold, even in summer, so prepare for that initial shock. Second, people often try to jump off the really high ledges, I'm talking way up the cliff - bad move. Search and Rescue makes at least one trip a year to Hippie Hole to rescue or airlift someone out. YouTube has video of some pretty nasty cliff jump fails, be smart and have fun! If you want to see the Black Hills by helicopter, take a sightseeing tour instead.

Nice Spot To Chill By The Water

Go early in the morning to avoid to much people. It is Fun to jump of the rocks. Bring water shoes for more confort.

Great Rocks, Great Jumps, Great Fellowship

This was a great way to wrap up our week in the Black Hills/Custer State Park area! Drive Foster Gulch Rd all the way to the end and park your car. The hike was a bit of a scramble, but you'll find garnets and staurolite embedded in the rocks along the way! Once you get down to the end of the trail, you'll find a couple of pools before you hit the water falling into Hippie Hole. The area is perfect for sunning on the rocks and for the more adventurous and daring: cliff jumping! On the right side is a sketchy rope and vertical rock face to climb back up OR you can go to the left side and climb the rocks back up (also sketchy... be careful where you step and maybe bring a partner to have your back). We made new friends there and it was overall one of our favorite spots in the state.


Please respect the places you find on The Outbound Collective.

Always practice Leave No Trace ethics on your adventures. Be aware of local regulations and don't damage these amazing places for the sake of a photograph. Learn More

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