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New and traditional ways of exploring the globe, and your own backyard.

Thursday, August 5, 2010

A gruesome find in the Badlands...

The Badlands...

July 4 (cont.)

As we traveled further west, I started to see odd colored cliffs from the highway. We were about to enter the Badlands.
I recently saw these in the movie Dances with Wolves. And while that movie was pretty good, sad but good, it did not give the Badlands justice.
The Badlands National Park is like a beautiful Grand Canyon, but one where the bottom is not a mile away, and the different shapes of stone are able to be touched.
It was overcast but I felt that added to the ambiance. The formations were red, orange, yellow, green, purple. The land itself was dry and cracked, and looked like sand and sand castles. The rock was incredibly crumbly. I tried to hike up a small trail and found it very difficult.
We did a marked trail and the view of the area was vast and never-ending. Little kids ran by me up the steep, stair-like terrain. Their parents tried to get them to slow down and look at the plant life. I saw a cactus which was pretty cool.
On the way down, I debated taking the same path but opted to do the loop and came across the bones of a dead animal. It was a gruesome find…but still interesting and reminded me that I definitely was not alone on that path. It looked like the bones were once part of a coyote, but I’m not sure.
We did the main road loop which begins and ends at I-90 – stopping along the way for the museum, visitor center, and views. The colors kept changing, and I wished we could stay for the sunset which I had heard was beautiful.
There is a campground and Inn on the site. While we did not stay there, I would highly recommend them just for the location and I think the campground was only about $20.
Next was a stop I had been looking forward to since planning the trip….


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