Trip Start Jan 06, 2011
270Trip End Ongoing
Map your own trip!
Show trip route
Where I stayed
Badlands/White River KOA
We slept in some today and then got up ate breakfast and headed on our way for the Badlands. It was about an hour and a half drive from the campground to get to Sage Creek Road, which would lead in to the badlands. I was a little concerned when we turned on Sage Creek Road because it was an unpaved road and I felt that we were being illegal, but Jared informed me we were fine. We were on the unpaved road for about 25 miles until we got to the Badlands Loop road. While on Sage Creek we stopped at the Sage Creek Basin Overlook and the Badlands Wilderness Overlook. You would think that we would see some wildlife at the Badlands Wilderness Overlook, but this did not happen. We did see far off in the distance a herd of buffalo while driving and a prairie dog as we drove past the Roberts Prairie Dog Town.
Our first stop after getting on the Badlands Loop was Pinnacles Overlook where we met a park ranger and were given a survey to fill out and send in
After finishing up at all those overlooks we headed to the Fossil Exhibit Trail to do a walk on a boardwalk and check out the fossils that they had in cases. Next we headed to the Saddle Pass Trail to do a short hike. This hike was only .5 mile one way so we figured that we wouldn't need to bring our water and Jared could do it in his flip flops. We were definitely mistaken. This was a super strenuous hike that climbs up the Badlands Wall to a view over the White River Valley. It was really steep and the entire trail was loose gravel that we kept slipping in. The views from the top were definitely worth the trip.
Our next stop in the park was to stop at the Visitor's Center to try to find a bottle opener magnet. They did not have any so we opted to not buy a magnet. When we finished up at the Visitor's Center we headed to a parking area for the Door Trail, Window Trail and the Notch Trail
When we finished up with our trails we headed up to the Big Badlands Overlook for one final look at the Badlands. Although we didn't see much wildlife throughout our day we did really enjoy the Badlands. The trails that weren't boardwalks were really cool because you could go different ways to meet up with the trail and you couldn't really tell you were on an organized trail besides random markers. It would have been easy to lose your way, which was cool because it didn't seem as commercialized as some other places do.
We decided to spend the night at a KOA that was 10 miles south of the Badlands. It is a nice place and since we were so hot from our hikes in the intense heat we decided to take a dip in the pool before dinner. When were finished up we showered and then headed over to their food building to get some Indian tacos (which are tacos but instead of a tortilla they used Indian Fry Bread) and chicken nuggets. Both food options were delicious. After dinner we worked on some plans, blogged and relaxed.