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Thread: Badlands National Park
04-27-2012, 10:54 AM #1
Badlands National Park
Anyone ever been there? I'm going to be stopping through on my way across the country next week. My plan is to camp at the Cedar Pass Lodge and shoot the sunrise somewhere at one of the east side overlooks...either Big Badlands, Door Trail, or Window Trail. I've searched and searched and browsed Flickr for hours but I can't find anything that convinces me to go one way or the other. I'm only going to have one morning and then I'll be back on the road so I want to maximize my wow factor for time spent if that makes sense.
Big Badlands looks like maybe cooler terrain with the mix between badlands spires and towers and some prairie which hopefully will be green, but Door Trail and Window Trail look like they could have more impressive, closer views of the spires and towers. I just can't tell from Google Maps and the pictures I've found which places will be in a canyon and totally blocked from the sunrise or which will have clear views to the east and west. I won't have time to explore beforehand so I'd like to know as much before I go as possible.
Anyone have any advice?
04-27-2012, 12:17 PM #2
Going to the So Dak or No Dak Badlands? The parks in South Dakota, certainly worth the stop if you have a few hours to kill driving I-90. They let you just climb around on anything. If your doing any biking check out the Rapid City area, then Spearfish (where i live) biking and climbing in the Black Hills are world class.
Sent from my DROID2 GLOBAL using TGR Forums"South Dakota is for lovers."
04-27-2012, 01:00 PM #3
love the badlands... last time there was about 2 years ago with the family as we headed out to MN for family vaca. Use to go visit when I was a kid
some general thoughts....
Don't worry too much... a drive through on the main road, 240, hooking up wiht 90 is about an 1 hr if you dont stop. Tons of places to stop along the way to take pics and some hiking. We stopped most of the time at Panorama and Burns Basin for the views and break. Also stopped for lunch at Conata so pack a lunch if you can and want to just relax.
I know it is tourist trap but make sure you stop at Wall Drug and get your free cold water, tourist shit, and redneck watching fill.
Enjoy it... really cool terrain and the sunrises / sunsets will blow your mind
04-27-2012, 02:57 PM #4
Thanks for the info. My plan is to shoot the sunrise on the east side and then drive the road out and back and hop back on 90. Right now it seems like the Door Trail is gonna be my safest bet. Then I'll probably head down and hike Notch and Window trails after sunrise. Looking forward to it!
I've driven through SD on 90 more than once now and have done the whole Wall Drug deal. For some reason we never drove south from Wall to Badlands.
04-27-2012, 08:01 PM #5
Just wake up and start driving West on 240. Pull over wherever you want and shoot, or go to one of the many Overlooks. Find a place where you can shoot West, too - since you'll mainly get silhouettes shooting into the sunrise. Honestly there is so much there you'll have visual overload. The coolest part is that everything is smaller than it looks...
Amazing place. Try to stop in Kyle or any of the other Rez towns to meet some of the locals. Very cool people.
04-28-2012, 11:54 AM #6
I haven't posted pictures here in a long time. I hope these post. At any rate, these photos were taken in 2010 while following the auto road from the east entrance through about mid-way along the loop. Hope that they help to give you some perspective. You can, as others have mentioned, do as you please and hike wherever. We hiked a few miles down into one area, then returned to the car."You can't drink all day if you don't start in the morning".
04-29-2012, 10:20 PM #7
Sweet, thanks for the info and pics. They did post ok. Getting pretty excited for this trip.
05-01-2012, 04:17 PM #8
Just a heads up for anyone else looking at this thread, the Cedar Pass Campground, contrary to what they post on their website, does take reservations for individual sites. Not sure how those are enforced but it's maybe a little bit of reassurance.