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

    Badlands

    National Park South Dakota

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  • 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.

Weather

The Badlands weather is variable and unpredictable with temperature extremes ranging from 116° F to -40° F. Summers are hot and dry with occasional violent thunderstorms. Hailstorms and occasional tornadoes can descend on the Badlands with sudden fury. Winters are typically cold with 12 to 24 inches of total snowfall.

Of the sixteen inches of annual precipitation, most falls during the warmer months. June is the wettest month, while December and January are the driest.

Sudden and dramatic weather changes are common. Visitors are urged to dress in layers and be prepared with hats, sunglasses, sunscreen, and adequate water for hiking.

Badlands Weather Averages

Month

Temperatures (F°)

Highs/Lows

Precipitation (inches)

January

34

11

0.29

February

40

16

0.48

March

48

24

0.90

April

62

36

1.83

May

72

46

2.75

June

83

56

3.12

July

92

62

1.94

August

91

61

1.45

September

81

51

1.23

October

68

39

0.90

November

50

26

0.41

December

39

17

0.30


Local Weather Forecast

 
 

Did You Know?

The white water of Sage Creek

Available water in the badlands is always loaded with sediment. Cloudy and milky white in appearance, the water contains particles that carry a slight charge of electricity. The particles repel each other, instead of settling to the bottom. Early visitors found the water unsuitable for drinking.