Visitors to the South Unit may experience up to 30 minute delays and rough road conditions due to road construction along East River Road. Check at South Unit Visitor Center for current road conditions. Updated 07/09/2014 5:16 pm MT
National Park Getaway
Contact: Eileen Andes, 701-623-4466
Contact: Elise Cleva, 202-208-6843
Theodore Roosevelt National Park
MEDORA, N.D. – The badlands hills rise one after another, revealing strata of colors: taupe and tan, red-brown, blue-gray. Earth here is a hybrid—hills like camel humps, tiger-striped by their rock layers—through which a smooth silver river glides. Badgers, bison, pronghorn, and elk enliven the terrain with their burrowing—pacing—leaping, while riders, at the feet of hills, guide their horses through wildflowers and scrub.
We know this landscape, even if we've never seen it in person. This is the West with a capital "W"—epitome of rugged—quintessence of wild. Ranchland, canyon-land, no-man's-land; land of movies and novels, murals and dreams. Seductive and merciless; humbling and awesome; world of campfire-crackle nocturnes and coyote-howl serenades.
Hike this world; cycle it; coast its scenic drives. Appreciate its details through a camera lens, its grandeur with your bare eyes. Let the land teach you what quiet is. Listen, in the stillness, for a bison's hoof-stamp or a rustle of grass.
You can start planning a visit to Theodore Roosevelt National Park with the help of the 75th in a series of weekly travel articles. These National Park Getaways, found at www.nps.gov/getaways, take you to places entrusted to the care of the National Park Service. In such places, like Theodore Roosevelt National Park, we feed our hunger for adventure, tranquility, and the sublime.
Did You Know?
The Little Missouri River began to carve the badlands about 600,000 years ago during the Pleistocene Epoch. The river formerly ran to Hudson Bay, but the glaciers diverted it into the Missouri River. More...