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Meet Daryl Stisser. Working as a climbing guide for Sylvan Rocks since the early 2000's, Daryl has climbed with countless visitors in the Custer area and is constantly exploring new routes in the Black Hills. Daryl is your go-to guy when it comes to climbing or getting answers to your climbing questions. Whether you're looking for a leisurely climb or want to push yourself to the limit, the granite spires of Custer State Park are a great place to enjoy a thrilling rock climbing adventure.

The Custer area is home to rock climbs for all ages and skill levels.
Expert climbers can experience climbs with long, steep sustained crack lines, as well as outstanding face climbs.
Slender granite formations called the Needles provide some of the best climbing in the Black Hills area.
More Climbing Adventures
Expert guides can help novice climbers enjoy the sport and the views.
Kids of all ages can experience rock climbing with the aid of expert guides.
Totem Pole is an established climb route located in Custer State Park.
Climbers will find several challenging but beautiful climbs.
Daryl Stisser of Sylvan Rocks Climbing School has conquered most every route in the Black Hills.
When should I plan my climb?

Since rock climbing takes place outdoors, plan to get started in the morning for the most stable weather. The mountain weather patterns of the area can lead to thunder showers in the afternoon. Good weather can be experienced any month of the year, but summer and fall are the most dependable months.

What makes rock climbing in Custer different?

The granite spires of Custer State Park are very unique and beautiful. The large granite spires were formed years ago as the hot magma cooled. Rock climbing on these rock faces is unlike anywhere else Daryl has ever visited, and of course, the Black Hills topography allows for excellent views from the top.

What if I've never climbed before? Should I be worried about my safety?

Rock climbing is an activity that everyone should experience for themselves at some point. If you're a beginner, a guide can empower you to do things and take you places that you may not have imagined possible in a short period of time. If you are an experienced climber, there are guidebooks available for the areas so that you can climb on your own, but hiring a climbing guide who can quickly take you to some of the best routes the area has to offer can make the most of your limited vacation time.

Who can climb?

Whether you're 7 or 77, climbing has something for everyone. Rock climbing is a great family activity or individual experience. Either way, Custer State Park has climbing adventures for everyone to enjoy at their own level.

Where can I find the best routes?

Inner Course is a great route for novice climbers. Located near Sylvan Lake, the climb is beautiful and presents a great view of other climbs in the area. If you're a more experienced climber, check out the Cathedral Spires or West Buttress near Sylvan Lake. Guidebooks with more information can be found at Granite Sports in Hill City.

What should I wear?

Custer's climbs include rocks that are sharper than some places. For this reason, long pants with knees intact are encouraged along with a comfortable pair of walking shoes. Sunscreen, sunglasses, water and snacks are also recommended. And don't forget your camera! Everyone needs at least one picture of themselves scaling a massive rock.