• 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.

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?

Ben Reifel speaking at the Cedar Pass Campground Amphitheater - 1971

The Ben Reifel Visitor Center was named after Ben Reifel, the first congressman from the Sioux Nation, who served 5 terms. Afterwards, he served as consultant and Special Assistant for Indian Programs to the Director of the National Park Service. Badlands was his favorite national park.