October 9, 2010

Special Request; Badlands National Park, South Dakota

A Special Request was put in for me to do a post about Badlands National Park.

View from the top of "The Notch"
While we did not hit the Badlands on this trip, I have the images from a previous trip to do a post on it anyways. Most of these are from the three short hikes I did by the Cedar Pass area.

We decided not to hit the Badlands this time around for a few reasons. One, I had visited the park in March of 2009, when I was driving the trailer from Michigan to Washington after picking it up. Two, we'd seen badlands in other places such as Utah and Oregon, and from experience at all of them, it wasn't that different and felt like we'd been there, done that. Lastly, it was a 2 hour drive each way out of the way and just didn't feel drawn to do it.

Nonetheless, due to requests from the audience, I'll do a write up on my brief visit last year on a 70 degree day in March before the big snowstorm hit me in Montana. I swung by and did a couple of brief hikes to the top of the Badland cliffs in the Cedar Pass area of the park. They included the Window Trail and the Notch Trail.

Great Plains vista from top of the trail
After the hike, I drove the scenic drive, parallel to I-90 before rejoining the freeway at Wall. I did try to check out the famous Wall Drug that I'd seen signs for for 500 miles. But, it was closed!!! Apparently 5pm in March is not the biggest tourist season for them. It was weird to see an entire "town" closed like that before.

The scenic road does take you past several prairie dog towns and lots of pronghorns

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