• Badlands formations against the blue sky; photo by Rikk Flohr

    Badlands

    National Park South Dakota

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  • Visitor Center Open

    Construction crews are replacing the parking lot in front of the visitor center. Please follow the signs, park in the side lot, and use the side doors. The Ben Reifel Visitor Center remains open every day from 8 am to 4 pm.

Flowering Plants

Despite the harshness of the badlands terrain, a diversity of colorful flowers, especially during years of sufficient rainfall, peek through the wavering grasses of the mixed-grass prairie. Planning a trip to the park from May through June increases the likelihood of viewing patches of flowers within the grasses, along trails, and clinging to the banks of washes. Badlands National Park contains one of the largest contiguous native mixed-grass prairies under federal protection in the United States.

 

Did You Know?

Early motorist meanders through the Upper Tunnel

Early motorists along the Badlands Loop Road traveled through tunnels carved into the formations. Since the road’s layout defied engineering logic by being based on scenery rather than stability, the road is constantly shifting. Though the tunnels are long gone, the sense of adventure remains.