Making my way through the Midwest, South Dakota was the stop I was looking forward to the most. First up the Badlands, followed by a visit with my friend Ashley in Rapid City (since I’ve known her she’s told me how pretty the Black Hills of SD are, so I was pretty siked to check them out finally!)
Badlands National Park was certainly unlike any landscape I’ve seen prior- dramatically eroded buttes and spires stretch across the horizon, in conjunction with the ‘largest protected mixed-grass prairie in the U.S.’ (that last part is according to the National Park Service, because I certainly didn’t know this). Once upon a time, French-Canadian fur trappers called this area “les mauvais terres pour traverse,” or “bad lands to travel through.”
The Black Hills… apparently there’s a really famous attraction here that you may have heard of, Mount Rushmore or something? I don’t know, I didn’t visit… but I did enjoy hiking, cliff jumping, swimming, and climbing all over- one adrenaline-filled adventure after another. All the fun was had, and I’m glad to report my friend did NOT over-exaggerate how cool this area was!