Theodore Roosevelt National Park

North Dakota, United States of America

Partially Family Friendly

About Theodore Roosevel National Park

Named for the US President Theodore Roosevelt who once lived and ranched here, this park consists of three separate units of land, the North Unit, the South Unit and the Elkhorn Ranch Unit. Together they comprise around 285 km2 (110 mi2) of badlands in western North Dakota.


Established as a National Park in 1978, this landscape of cliffs, gullies and dome-shaped hills horizontally striped with layers of the sediment that form them is apparently barren. In fact it is home to a surprisingly rich and varied wildlife population. Most conspicuous to visitors will be a host of large mammals including bison, mule deer, white tailed deer, elk, wild horses, longhorns, pronghorns and coyote.


The three districts are connected by the Maah Daah Hey Trail, a 154 km (~96 mi) trail entirely open to hikers and horseback riders (biking not allowed in portions of national park itself – alternative routes to bypass). The South Unit is the largest, at just over 186 km2 (~72 mi2). The North Unit is around 97 km2 (~37 mi2) acres.

The Elkhorn Ranch Unit is the site of Roosevelt’s second ranch in the area. Only the foundations of the buildings that used to stand here remain and the site is small, remote and accessible only by gravel roads.

Elsewhere across the park, though, activities abound and include back country camping, cycling, canoeing and kayaking, cross country skiing and snowshoeing, fishing, hiking and horseback riding. There are marked nature trails which are excellent for wildlife viewing.

Considering the wealth of activities and things to see, this is a little visited park – the annual visitor figures number only around 563,000 – so come for the solitude, if nothing else.

Wild Camping
Cross-Country Skiing
Horse Riding
Wildlife Watching
Landscape Photography
Guided Tours
North Dakota, United States of America
Latitude: 47.171044, Longitude: -103.428469