Activities For Dogs In Badlands National Park

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Introduction

Planning a trip to Badlands National Park? Are you thinking about bringing your dog along with you? Well, that is a great idea! Not only will your dog love going just about anywhere with you, but this trip is also a fantastic one to bring your pup along for the ride. If you just happen to live nearby the Badlands National Park, these activities are also well suited for you - you may even find some fun new thing to do with your dog locally that you may never have thought of. So, time to take a look at all the exciting things to do with your pup in Badlands National Park!

Hiking

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Sunny Day
Cheap
Easy
1 - 2 hrs
Items needed
Collar
Leash
Water
Activity description
It is an unfortunate fact that most national parks do not allow dogs on the hiking trails for various reasons. Dogs can scare wildlife, be potentially harmful to other hikers, bark and disturb the quiet of the park or even get injured themselves by a rattlesnake or just a stray rock under their paw. While all of these reasons for not permitting dogs on hiking trails are valid concerns, you may still want to walk with your pup while visiting Badlands National Park. Don't worry! You definitely can go on some very memorable walks with your dog in tow without breaking any park rules. Hiking in the park is fairly inexpensive and you only have to pay a small entrance fee. Try to head out later in the day or early in the morning when temperatures are cooler.
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1
Road walks
Pets may not be permitted on hiking trails in Badlands National Park but they are allowed on the roadways! With many unpaved, gravel roads weaving through the park, there is plenty to explore by foot on the road rather than opting for a trail. You and your dog will be able to take in the scenery, get in a good hike and stick to the park regulations.
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Campground exploration
Dogs are permitted in all the campground and RV parks in Badlands National Park so why not take a tour of these populated areas with your dog? While it may not be a hiking trail, wandering through campsites will certainly keep you busy. You may even meet other "neighbors" who have dogs as well! This is a perfect way to get to know the Badlands area on foot while still abiding by the National Park rules.
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3
Buffalo Gap National Grassland
If you really want to hike and run through a park with your dog, then your best bet is to visit the Buffalo Gap National Grassland which is adjacent to Badlands National Park. The Grassland is maintained and operated by the US Forest Service rather than the national parks department which means their rules regarding pets are different. Here, you can walk your dog on any trail you'd like as long as you keep them on a leash!
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Camping

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Sunny Day
Cheap
Normal
24 hrs
Items needed
Leash
Collar
Blankets
Food
Sleeping Bag
Tent
Doggy Waste Bags
Activity description
One of the biggest attractions in the Badlands National Park is the campsite area. Many people choose to visit this park to spend a beautiful night under the starry sky and it is the perfect place to do so. Camping in Badlands is pretty inexpensive and with warm nights, you can camp year round. The best part is that the park allows dogs to stay with you at the campsite! Hurray! Your pup can camp, too! Of course, you must follow the park rules such as keeping your dog on a leash at all times and cleaning up any pet waste. However, that is easy! As long as you get to bring your pup camping with you, right?
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1
Book a site
Plan for which campsite you'd like to stay at in Badlands National Park. There are two main campgrounds at the park, Cedar Pass and Sage Creek campgrounds. Cedar Pass is a little bit more modern with flushing toilets and multiple campsites while Sage Creek is more rustic (you may even see a buffalo pass by!). Choose which you and your pup would prefer and book your site.
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Pack
Packing well for your camping trip is essential. You need to make sure you have everything you and your pup will need when you are secluded from the world, out in nature in Badlands National Park. A tent, fresh water, and food for you and your dog are all essentials. While the Badlands tend to be on the hotter side weather-wise, a cozy blanket for your dog to curl up in at night is also a good idea.
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3
Camp
Pitch your tent and enjoy your night in the wilderness! Start a fire, roast some hot dogs on a stick and explore the area with your pup. Remember to follow the park rules and be respectful of your neighboring campers (try not to let your dog's barking break the serenity too much if possible!). Stay one night or more, your dog is sure to have a good time with you by their side.
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Photo Shoot

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Sunny Day
Free
Easy
1 hr
Items needed
Water
Collar
Leash
Camera
Activity description
There are plenty of photo opportunities in Badlands National Park so why not make a whole activity out of it? You can bring your dog to various spots throughout the park and capture that perfect, frame-worthy photo! Not only will you get to travel around Badlands and see the best spots that the park has to offer but your dog will also have a great time. All the new places to see and to smell will make them a happy pup! Pay a small park entrance fee and then enjoy! Remember to bring water as the park can get quite hot and never, ever leave your dog unattended in the car - it can get even hotter in there.
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Cedar Pass
Located right near a dog-friendly campground, this area is the best for capturing a beautiful sunrise. Position your pup near an interesting patch of cracking mud with the eroding towers in the background and wait for the perfect sunrise light to capture your pup's beauty. Then, snap away! A perfect way to start your photo shoot.
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Caprock Balanced Rock
If you are looking for a unique picture, one you can only find in Badlands National Park, then this is it. Drive your car down the Badlands Loop Road and keep driving up Norbeck Pass. You will soon see a rock that appears to be balanced on top of a small tower, the perfect background for a photo of your pup! This spot is also ideal as you can easily drive to the location, no walking needed here!
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3
Panorama Point
If you are looking for an excellent landscape photo featuring your dog, then panorama point is where you need to go. It is the best spot to see almost all of Badlands National Park and an amazing place to catch a sunrise or sunset. Take a picture of your dog observing the view, taking in all the sites and smells of the land. This one will need to go on your wall for sure!
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More Fun Ideas...

Dining Out

You and your dog need to eat while visiting Badlands National Park! Look for a local dog-friendly restaurant or grab some takeout and head to a local park where you and your dog can eat and run.

Nearby Town

There is a lot to explore outside of Badlands National Park as well. From Historic sites like the Crazy Horse Memorial to many dog-friendly hiking trails, check out some places nearby that you can bring your pup.

Conclusion

Your dog is the perfect companion for your next trip to Badlands National Park and there is obviously so much that the two of you can do together. Plan a weekend camping trip, decide which roads you can hike with your dog, look into places in the surrounding area and don't forget to bring your camera to capture your dog living their best life in Badlands. Time to start getting excited to visit this area with your best friend - your dog!