Badlands – Cedar Pass

Over the night I discover that the Sage Creek campground has no nighttime lighting. The milky way is brighter than I’ve seen it for a while, despite the low elevation here. In the morning the pair of giant bison that were hanging around yesterday are still here, a little closer to our camper today. When lounging on the ground they look like a mountain of hide.

Bison Chillin

We pack up and drive east along the “wall” formation.

Badlands meet prairie

The problem with the other campground, Cedar Pass, is that the trail system doesn’t connect to the campground. You have to drive a mile or two to a trailhead. Or if you’re us, you walk along the shoulderless highway, watching people do things like driving backwards in the wrong lane. The eroding sedimentary hoodoos become more interesting.

Badlands hoodoos

And when we reach the main trailhead, the lands look fully bad, except for the occasional patch of grass on top that to me looks like a toupée.

Prairie Grass Toupée

We enjoy some “trails”, or routes marked with little metal posts, before finding a route back to the campground with some cross country in addition to the highway walking.

Badlands Hiking

Today’s hiking was fairly unusual, but still felt somehow in the realm of the familiar to me. What will be next as we head east to the Missouri river and beyond? I have no idea.

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