I visited the Badlands of South Dakota in 2018 on a road trip with my Dad. You can read about that whole road trip here. It was an incredible experience, and on that trip fell in love with the state of South Dakota (weird, I know) and it’s landscape. You’ll see what I mean in the pictures below.
There are so many reasons to visit the Badlands but my top five are listed below.
- The views. Obviously. You can see for what feels like hundreds of miles from the top of the ridges. You can take a scenic drive through the park, explore by foot, or by bike. Whatever you chose, you can’t miss the views.
- The geological formation of the rocks. These rocks are about a million years old and you can see deposits and erosion that have taken shape over time.. Even if you’re not into rocks (which I”m not), basically it looks cool and you can see a variety of colors in the rocks.
- Hiking. There’s quite a few hiking trails in the park which you can find here. There’s some shorter easier hikes like Window and Door Trails as well as some that are harder like Castle Trail.
- You might see a bison. Even a chance of seeing a bison is reason enough for me. Increase your chances of encountering one at a safe distance by exploring Sage Creek Rim Road which is a dirt road leading to overlooks and a campground.
- Sunrise & Sunset – Watching the sun rise and set is one of my favorite ways to relax, especially when viewing it over the mountains. Plan your trip though the park so you can watch magic hour from one of the most beautiful places in the US.