The Inner Outlet is the large formation hulking over Sylvan Lake. It is the nearest to the lake of the two huge monoliths that tower over the area. The Inner Outlet has some classic moderate trad lines, as well as some harder bolted routes. Classic Crack is one of the finest climbs in South Dakota, and shouldn't be missed by anyone.
From Sylvan Lake, walk along the trail on the near side of the lake. Walk underneath the giant chockstone, and head left. The Inner Outlet becomes obvious after walking around the ridge of rock behind the dam area.
This is the best pitch of climbing under 5.9 in the Outlets, and maybe the best single pitch period.On the side of Inner Outlet opposite the lake, look for a beautiful prominent crack. Climb it. A fairly long sustained pitch of great climbing with bomber gear leads to the top of the formation. The climbing is stout for 5.7, but it is so well protected it is a much easier way to the top of the Inner Outlet than the Wiessner Chimney.This is one of the top ten pitches in the Needles for sure. A...[more]Browse More Classics in SD
Rather than taking the path that passes the giant chockstone, take the well-worn trail that skirts the northwestern edge of the outlets. To get to this trail, park at the Sylvan General Store parking area. Walk down toward the lake from the parking lot and make a left (heading NW) onto the trail that cirlces lake walkway/trail. Before you reach the outlets, where the damn and the path that passes the giant chockstone are located, you will find a trail that heads to the NW/W, thereby going to the leftside of the outlet/rock formation nearest to the lake. After walking a hundred yards or so on this path, you will come to two brown, small buildings owned by the Sylvan Lake Resort. There was a couple of paddle boats and an old couch laying around the buildings as of July 2008. Stay on the trail, which veers to the right or NW, and do not head west onto the road. The trail will take you down a gentle slope. The Inner Outlets will be the third rock formation/fin on your right. The Outer Outlets are the next formation down hill. The approach from the parking lot to the Inner Oulets should only take 10-15 minutes at most.
This area is one of my absolute favorite areas. If you are planning a trip to the area I highly recommended spending a day or two up at Custer State Park. The rock there is very unique, fun and challenging to climb on. You will find that even the tiniest of crystals are great hand and foot holds despite there size.
Along with great climbing there are tons of trails, hiking and swimming in the lake is also great. There are also tons of great routes for kids as well.
You will also meet tons of great climbers here too, Like Climbing Legend Peter Lev. Peter is over 70 yrs old with over 50yrs of experience and still climbing. I had the honor of climbing a few pitches with him, Climb on Peter!!! Climb ON :)
This is Josh leading the route to the left of "Classic Crack". I can't remember the name of the route and I don't see it posted on PM. If any one knows the name please let me know. This route is a mixed sport/trad route.