Community Caves (sometimes called Wild Cat Cavern) is a unique natural feature in Spearfish Canyon. This is such a neat place, I find myself visiting every couple of months. It almost seems like a different experience each time. In the winter, it is a massive frozen waterfall and in the summer the small waterfall just trickles. Hiking in Spearfish Canyon is a great way to enjoy the natural beauty of the area.
How do you get to Community Caves
Right after mile marker 13, there is a pullout for parking – park there. It is 2.7 miles south on Spearfish Canyon Scenic Byway, set your odometer just after the turn off Colorado Blvd.
Once you are parked, cross the road. You’ll find a well-worn path in the ditch follow it north for several yards. Watch for a path down to the stream, follow that down and cross the stream. This should put you at the base of the narrow ravine that leads up to Community Caves. If not, just look around, the vegetation hides the path in the summer – you’ll know the path when you find it. It is well-worn and there is a small stream (from the waterfall) that runs along the trail.
Hiking to Community Caves
Finding the trail the first time is the hardest part. However, the trail is not a cake walk either. It is steep and the top portion has lots of small loose rocks and gravel. There are no shear drops and no rock climbing skills are required. A walking stick may be helpful and being sure footed helps too. I’m not ready to take my small kids on this hike yet – simply because I wouldn’t be able to carry them very well on the last bit of the trail.
Community Caves Video
Please enjoy this video I shot at the caves. You can see the final portion of the trail in a couple of places in the video.
Spearfish Canyon is part of the Black Hills National Forest. Be sure to enjoy some of the other hikes and waterfalls in the area.
A few of my favorite hikes in the area are: