Explore the most popular no dogs trails in North Dakota with hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

This trail is fairly easy, but I would keep the moderate rating because of the creek crossings. The bank of the first crossing of coming from the west, was completely washed out when I went out. I wouldn't hike this trail for 12 hours after any rain fall. Becomes very muddy and therefore slippery. But the wild flowers and rolling hills scenery were amazing.

hiking
7 days ago

Great views

hiking
18 days ago

Loved this trail!! Amazing history! If you are going through the park, dont pass this one up!

hiking
20 days ago

Have been going nearby to Watford City for work frequently and finally thought of finding a nearby hiking trail after many boring nights in the hotel fitness center. Checked out reviews and this looked like a great trail that wasn't too short or too long. Happy to say this loop lived up to expectations!

The comment on here stating that the best view is behind the "improvised fence" was definitely correct. Took a few pictures and panoramic shots up there until I was satisfied. Had a Smiling Moose sandwich for dinner on the bench to the right of that "improvised fence" and it was awesome to have a good view of the Badlands at the same time. The River Bend Outlook was also an awesome place for pictures and I did enjoy hiking along the ridge-line for the rest of the loops afterwards.

I'm not an experienced hiker and this was actually my first real trail outside of the pushover "Green Belt" in Austin, TX. Had a good time and was surprised to finish the loop in about 2 hours, but I was by myself and only slowed down for pictures. In the near future I plan to return to this loop to hike the opposite direction, or try a slightly longer trail in the park. Thanks to the fun I had here, I plan to look up well rated trails around the Houston area and see if anything compares, which is doubtful.

This trail was beautiful! Be careful-there we’re a ton of ticks in the high grasses and bring plenty of water for everyone in your party. Also be careful around the bison. All the ones we saw were very calm but they can charge at any time. One was directly in our path to return and we had to keep our distance. The rock formations and petrified trees were pretty awesome though!

Nice short hike with beautiful views. The colors are spectacular at this spot.

Amazing hike, with spectacular views. We did it in three hours and stopped plenty for photos.

hiking
1 month ago

This one is pretty straight forward. Not a long trail, but it provides some good views of this portion of the Badlands. You can definitely see the coal layer of the Badlands along this trail.

hiking
1 month ago

Another trail in Teddy Roosevelt that we really enjoyed as a family. Great views of the river bend. Doesn't take a lot of time, so make sure you stop and enjoy the view. Posted some pictures, hopefully they will help with your trail planning!

hiking
1 month ago

This one is pretty straight forward. Paved trail that leads to a great overview. We enjoyed the climb up the hill and the incredible views at the top.

We really enjoyed this hike. Plenty of stairs but they lead to great views of the badlands. Not a long hike. Buffalo tracks on the trail after you clear the stairs so be prepared for wildlife on this one. We enjoyed all our hikes in Teddy Roosevelt NP. I hope the pictures posted will help you with your trail planning!

hiking
1 month ago

Had the trail all the myself, was very clean (no litter), easy to follow, and beautiful scenery.

My wife and hiked this trail in early June 2018 and loved every mile of its ever-changing scenery! We planned two nights out but heavy rains kept us off the trail and sleeping in our car in Juniper campground the first night. This place is solitude at its best—we were the only ones in the backcountry on a Saturday. The trail is challenging and will throw a lot at you: mud, high winds, poison ivy, ticks, river crossings, navigational challenges. These will vary based on the time of the year. We’re fast hikers but our overall average speed was only 1.5 mph.

We hiked the trail clockwise beginning at Juniper Campground and got one river crossing out of the way right off the bat. The river was swift and just over waist high. The riverbed is silt here and footing was sketchy. The second river crossing below Oxbow Overlook was easier as the riverbed is more rock than mud and footing was much better. There was a lot of mud and standing water on the trail from the previous night’s rain. The Bentonite clay that forms many of the badland features is very slick when wet and literally cakes the bottom of your boots with a thick layer of mud.

We had a GPS with a track of the trail, which came in very handy when we weren’t sure if we had gotten off the main trail or not. Many game trails intersect the trail. Every few minutes you should see an older wooden or newer brown Carsonite post. A few were lying on the ground. A ranger told us they have been working to improve navigation on the trail and this appeared evident to us. We still had to refer to our GPS numerous times.

Along the way, we stopped at Achenbach Spring to refill water. It had plenty of flow. It’s a pretty steep descent down to the spring. If it’s wet at all, good luck staying upright. We were getting buffeted by 50+ mph winds while walking the high prairie areas on either side of the spring.

We hiked about 13 miles the first day and camped in the valley a couple miles beyond Oxbow Overlook at the base of a butte. The grass in the cottonwoods along the river was too high and tick infested to consider camping in. Erosion of the buttes over the eons has created nice beds of sand at the base of them allowing for beach-like camping. Our boots and socks stayed off the entire evening. It was amazing to sit back at dusk and listen to the wildlife. Given the higher latitude and being at the far western edge of the Central Time Zone, it didn’t get completely dark until after 11pm under a clear sky. Several coyotes barking at our tent jolted us from sleep at 1am--a little frightening to say the least.

The next day we finished the trail. The first few miles after camp were spectacular! The climb up toward River Bend Overlook is steep and intersects with the Caprock Coulee Trail. We had to yield to a large bison standing at the intersection. Going right on the CCT follows a narrow ridge with the best vistas on the trail. Once we reached the road, we opted to hike it back to camp to finish out the loop.

All-in-all a great, challenging hike. What we liked best about the trail is the variety of habitats, the vistas and wildlife. Some of the amazing badlands formations deserve extra time for exploring. There is not a whole lot of info online about this trail so if you have questions, I'll try to help. Feel free to email me at rbell@digitalcarto.com.

Our tips: treat all of your clothing with Permethrin for tick control. Load a track of the trail on a GPS or phone app.; it will save you time. Always keep looking forward for the next trail marker. Stay off the badlands formations if its raining.

Great views, creek crossing can be somewhat challenging. I joined this trail with the talkington ‘sp ‘ trail. Underestimated water usage. Temps over 90. Great way to experience the Park.

Nice hike , not really sure it’s ‘hard’
Beautiful views though.

hiking
1 month ago

Good short hike! Trail was super easy to follow. Definitely worth your time.

hiking
1 month ago

Awesome view! Loved every second of it!

Nice trail. A couple of steep areas that were slick due to rain the night before went out and back approx 3 mi and took the left veer to petrified forest. Worth the hike. Amazing!

backpacking
1 month ago

It was a solid trail. We started about 3pm in the afternoon and made it almost the entire loop. Set up camp about 1 to 1.5 miles from where we parked (we started on north side so camped on south side). Most the hike is up on the perched high grassland. A lot of pronghorn and buffalo.

camping
1 month ago

It was good. Nice easy trail and we saw a bunch of Buffalo off in the distance at sunset

Amazing views, paste your self on the trail unless you love stairs. Overall it kicked me and girlfriend butts and was definitely a good hike.

hiking
1 month ago

Wish the trail was longer, we had the chance to be 5 feet from a bison which was pretty awesome.

Good trial, lots to see! Overall lovely hike!

If it has rained in the past 2 weeks do not try this Trail. they will be too many muddy Hills and you may not finish it . you might just end up hurting yourself . you're better off just waiting until it dries before you try the Trail.

Great trail that gives you a bit of everything the Badlands has to offer. I would give this a moderate rating though as there are some steep areas. Saw bison and pronghorn while hiking. Well marked. No shade, so hat and sunscreen required.

2 months ago

Great trail!

hiking
6 months ago

This is very short, and it's hard to even call this a trail. It's more like a scenic overlook, but the views were amazing overlooking the Little Missouri, and I saw a lone bison nearby.

hiking
6 months ago

I hiked this trail in July to loop back from the Lower Paddock Creek Trail, and despite tiring from the 11-mile hike on a 100-degree day, I enjoyed this section and thought it was a little more enjoyable than Lower Paddock Creek. It's a great way to experience the park on foot. I saw several bison grazing at a distance, and I enjoyed following the muddy creek.

The trail is a great way to experience the park. I did this on a 100 degree day in July, but the actual hike was not that challenging, providing you bring enough water. The biggest challenges were the flies and frequent crossings of a muddy creek.

hiking
8 months ago

Started out on a breezy day with 45 mph wind gusts. Felt like we were going to get blown off the ridge. Made it a ways down the northern loop and got blocked by a stubborn bison camped out on the trail. So we decided this was not our day and headed back! Plenty of petrified tree stumps to see though before you hit the ridge.

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