Theodore Roosevelt National Park
Located just minutes West of Dickinson, North Dakota, Theodore Roosevelt National Forest has preserved part of the soul of American conservation. After a short drive through the town of Medora, visitors can enter the park before driving north and crossing over the freeway entering the vast wilderness of the park. Almost immediately, we saw wild horses and lots of little prairie dogs.
Just prior to Medora, a quick stop on exit 32 will bring you to the Painted Canyon Visitors Center. This is worth a stop and is a great way to see the park without having to spend a lot of time.
The park is home to quite a few wild horses. Originally from around the turn of the century, these feral horses are not protected and considered a “national heritage species.”
You won’t miss the praire dogs as you drive through the park. They are super cute and you can nearly reach out to them.
Horses aren’t the only large herbavore in the park. Buffalo roam this beautiful valley and are easily spotted throughout your drive. We saw three during our short visit.
Enjoy more than the animals at Theodore Roosevelt National Park. Every corner of road has new views and landscapes to enjoy.
You won’t regreat walking the Coal Vein Nature Trail. It’s a short mile-long walk. This was the location of an underground fire that lasted for a few decades. The hills here are made of bentonite clay and as the coal beneath them burned, it fired the clay into porcelanite. As the ground has eroded away, it has left porcelain chimneys scattered through the hike. This is only one of the interesting things to discover.
If you are coming to Theodore Roosevelt National Park, make sure to read our article A Perfect Day in Dickinson. There is a lot more to do in the area than just the park.