"On Second Glance: Not So Bad After All" Top 5 Page for this destination Badlands National Park by richiecdisc

Badlands National Park Travel Guide: 148 reviews and 414 photos

With visions of The Great Dust Bowl and hearty homesteaders trying to eke out an existence in this harsh terrain, it is easy to see why many write off this area as a bleak lifeless place. Life does exist and Native Americans have been doing just that for 11 thousand years. European settlers did not fare so well aside from unusually high periods of precipitation. Even this had detrimental effects on a land more fragile than it looks in the form of overuse, only furthering erosion.

Badlands National Park

Badlands was designated a National Monument in 1929 and became a National Park close to 50 years later. While many think only of its eroded buttes, pinnacles and spires, much of the park is prairie, in fact the biggest protected track of mixed grass prairie in the United States. On an overcast day, you could drive right by unimpressed by what appears at first a bleak landscape but if the sun is out and in particular if it is low in the sky, these very rock formations take on a much more spectacular glow and the creatures who call this land home come out to play when this very land is its most livable.

  • Last visit to Badlands National Park: Sep 2008
  • Intro Updated May 9, 2016
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Reviews (12)

Comments (6)

  • Bwana_Brown's Profile Photo
    Aug 23, 2010 at 11:23 AM

    Richie, glad to see that you enjoyed your latest Badlands adventure, just a week or two after Sue & I were there. I love your photo of the Bighorn Sheep! We quite enjoyed our single day touring Badlands NP.

  • toonsarah's Profile Photo
    Jun 17, 2010 at 8:42 AM

    Really wanted to get over here on our diversion from our Wyoming trip but it was just too far. Will have to do it another time though as I love this bleak but dramatic scenery, especially as you say when the light is right!

  • Antji's Profile Photo
    Mar 4, 2010 at 1:15 PM

    Let´s have a cheese - picnic !! ;) I love cheese. Great shots and writing and interesting to read about Bighorn - Sheep!

  • Nemorino's Profile Photo
    Dec 29, 2009 at 1:31 AM

    Good that you went back for "a second and better glance" at the Badlands. -- And thanks for your visit to my Saarbrücken page. -- As the Germans say, I wish you a "good slide" into the New Year.

  • DoreenDe's Profile Photo
    Dec 28, 2009 at 4:23 PM

    I didn't get the shooting stars but it still was not bad (couldn't they find a name that is more enticing?!)

  • Trekki's Profile Photo
    Dec 28, 2009 at 9:18 AM

    First, juchhu :-) Oh gorgeous afternoon and late light :-)) These formations will always remind me of huge paws, like in Paria :-)) And the shelters are really good :-) Look a bit futuristic :-)


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