A Quick Visit to Badlands National Park | OK Which Way


A Quick Visit to Badlands National Park

We began our day at the KOA near Mount Rushmore and had a long way to go to get across South Dakota. We were taking I-90 and making stops along the way, including Wall Drug, Old MacDonald’s Farm, and of course The Badlands. This meant we didn’t have a lot of time to spend at this National Park. But, I enjoyed the little bit of time we were there.


Park Info


Location: SW South Dakota. About an hour drive from Rapid City 
Established: 1978
Elevation: 2,365 – 3,340 feet
Things to See: multiple types of rock formations, mixed grass prairie, bighorn sheep
Things to Do: Explore the Visitor Centers and Fossil Preparation Lab, become a Junior Ranger, go on a hike, drive Badlands Loop Road
Lodging/Camping: Cedar Pass Lodge, Two Campgrounds, and Back Country camping are available
Food: Restaurant at Cedar Pass Lodge
Dogs are allowed in the campgrounds and picnic areas. Prohibited at Visitor Centers, on trails, and backcountry areas. 
Entrance Fee: $30/car  click here to see current fee pricing 
Park Maps: Link to park maps


Badlands Loop Road

Badlands Loop Road winds through the amazing geological features. There are a number of overlooks and trails to fully appreciate the buttes, pinnacles and canyons.

Badlands Loop Road | OK Which Way

Badlands National Park South Dakota | OK Which Way


I’m just in awe of the rugged beauty. It is a snapshot of the passing of time. Each layer is built from the changes in the earth including a sea that once covered the area, fossilized soil, and volcanic ash from the Great Basin. The varying rock types stacked together to create this geological wonder, and are now eroding away.

Rock formations at Badlands National Park | OK Which Way

A Quick Visit to Badlands National Park | OK Which Way

Badlands National Park Road Trip | OK Which Way


Bighorn Sheep

The horns on these sheep are spectacular. It’s always a thrill when we spot a ram. I feel like this one was giving us the side eye.

You might also see bison, prairie dogs, and rattlesnakes.

Badlands National Park Bighorn Sheep | OK Which Way

Personal Info

Date Visited: July 2006
What I Wish We Experienced, but didn’t: Climbing the ladder on the Notch Trail and learning geological history along the Fossil Exhibit Trail


Day 9
of 20 Day Road Trip

Road Trip to Badlands National Park | OK Which Way





Weird, but True

Scientists estimate that in the next 500,000 years, the Badlands will have eroded completely.


from the NPS website

Thinking About Exploring Badlands National Park?

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A Quick Visit to Badlands National Park | South Dakota Road Trip | OK Which Way


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