Continuing our journey through the stunning state of South Dakota, we head to The Badlands National Park. The park is home to some gorgeous landscapes and a very diverse wildlife. The entire park expands over 244,000 acres with the wildlife taking up 64,000 acres.
While observing the park, guests have a chance to see coyotes, porcupines, bighorn sheep, bobcats, ferrets, rattlesnakes and even bison. It is really cool to be able to see these animals up close, but make sure you never get too close and also never try to feed them. Guests might even be able to spot a black-footed ferret, which happens to be the most endangered land animal in North America.
The Badlands Loop Road is a scenic drive that takes you through the Badlands. It takes about an hour to complete the drive and there are many spots to pull off at so you can take a minute to relax and enjoy the view. The Badlands is full of eroded buttes, pinnacles and it also has the largest undisturbed grass prairie in the country. If you want to get a workout, the park has 8 marked trails that are perfect for hiking. Or there is also some great horseback riding throughout the park that is also available.
The Ben Reifel Visitor Center is located at the Badlands National Park and it is a really cool place to see all of the fossils that have been found on the land. Guests can check out fossils from ancient camels, horses and even saber-toothed cats. In fact, park officials are still finding prehistoric fossils in the park.
After checking out all that the Badlands have to offer, you can check out the Minuteman Missile National Historic Site, which is really close by. There are also many other National Parks in the area including Mount Rushmore.
Feature image courtesy of blackhillsbadlands.com.