Visitor Center Open / Road Construction
Park roads and parking lots are under construction. Expect occasional 10 - 15 minute road construction delays along Hwy 240 Loop Road. There is limited parking at the Ben Reifel Visitor Center. Please follow the signs to park in designate areas.
Additional Fire Restrictions in Place
Contact: Jennie Kish Albrinck, 605-433-5240
Contact: Julie Johndreau, 605-433-5242
Contact: Pam Griswold, 605-433-5552, X242
We welcome visitors to enjoy their national parks and public lands this summer – but please do so with caution. Due to excessive heat, drier than normal conditions, and high fire danger, we encourage you to read the following precautions:
-Before going hiking or camping, check for fire restrictions and closures in the area. Direct your inquiries to the agency that manages the public lands you are visiting. -Consider alternatives to campfires, even when they are allowed. Never leave a campfire or portable stove unattended. -If you are driving on unpaved roads, avoid parking or driving your vehicle in tall, dry vegetation. Hot vehicle parts can start a fire. -If you see smoke or fire, note the location and report it to authorities. Do NOT attempt to put out a fire by yourself.
Campfires are never allowed in Badlands National Park due to the extreme danger of prairie wildfire. Camp stoves or contained gas grills can be used in the campgrounds or picnic areas. Electrical hook-ups are available in the Cedar Pass Campground, operated by Forever Resorts.
In addition, the following restrictions are now in place:
-- No smoking outside a closed vehicle within the boundaries of either park;
-- No charcoal grills of any kind.
Summer temperatures in Badlands National Park and Minuteman Missile often exceed 105 degrees. Be prepared whether you are touring by car or hiking; both Badlands National Park and the Badlands South Unit have water bottle filling stations. Carrying extra water and food is always a good idea in these remote areas of southwestern South Dakota. Hikers should be prepared with hats, sunscreen, water, electrolyte replacement supplements and food. Always tell someone where you will be traveling, and understand that cell coverage is unreliable. Water and salty snacks are available at the Cedar Pass Lodge and at the Ben Reifel Visitor Center's Badlands Natural History Association bookstore. Have a safe and enjoyable visit to your national parks and public lands.
Did You Know?
The yellow and red layers in the badlands formations are fossilized soils, called paleosols. Fossil root traces, burrows, and animal bones found within the soils provide scientists with evidence of environmental and climatic changes that occurred in the badlands over time.