The Badlands are pretty badass. I’m not going to lie, I was a little scared of them, but equally intrigued. I kept reading things that said “they don’t call them ‘bad’ for no reason”. Uh….What? OY! I get it….They’re basically just a desert. There’s no shade. At all. There are rattlesnakes. It’s desolate. It’s miles from anything. It’s no joke. It’s also so freaking incredible!! We went to 6 National Parks on this trip and I found myself unexpectedly so at peace in this particular park. I got all the feels here.
The colors are so stunning! Be sure to catch a sunset or sunrise here!!
We saw the incredible wildlife here! Right away we saw deer. Then fox, tons of bison, goats, pronghorn and prairie dogs. We heard a few coyote at night as well. No snakes, luckily. (If you’re going to go off the trails which is not suggested, they like to hide under rocks and in dark places. Watch out!)
We slept at Sage Creek Campground vs Cedar Pass and I highly recommend it for any experienced camper!! It’s farther, completely rugged and you must take a dirt, rocky road to get reach it! Do not go over 20 miles an hour on this road. That’s probably pushing it. Leave time for your travel here!
Traveling this distance is also where you will see the majority of wildlife in the park. Bison have been know to come by say hello in the morning. There are only pit toilets at this campground. No running water. No cell reception. Don’t let that scare you. There are others nearby and the stars at night are absolutely worth it alone. A tad chilly and a tad windy even in the summer months so pack accordingly and you’ll be fine. Do it! It’s free because it’s not for everyone. Just pull in and set up!
$15 admission fee. $80 gets you a National Park season pass so depending on how many parks you think you’ll do on this trip, or in a year, it’s absolutely worth it! Ours more than paid for itself twice over.