Badlands Loop Road

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Badlands Loop Scenic Byway

For an adventurous drive and easy way to explore the park, pile your family in a mini van and take a ride on the Badlands Scenic Loop Byway. You'll be treated to breathtaking vistas, clean air, and a quiet atmosphere.

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  • The Scenic Byway is 32 miles in length and will take about one hour to drive.
  • There are 14 overlooks, most of which are wheelchair accessible.
  • This is a great way to explore the grasslands and view wildlife.

Overview

On the Badlands Scenic Loop Byway you'll be treated to breathtaking vistas, clean air, and a quiet atmosphere. You'll wind in, out, and around the unique native grasslands. Keep your eyes peeled for the hundreds of species of plants and animals that make this area home. If you are lucky, you'll spot a black-footed ferret, one of the most endangered animals in North America.

Driving Directions

The Badlands Scenic Loop Byway is located along Highway 240 in southwestern South Dakota. You can access it via Interstate 90 to the north, or via Highway 44 which connects to Highway 377 to the south.

From I 90 you can drive it in either direction by exiting at either exit 110 or exit 131.

Time/Distance

The loop stretches nearly 32 miles and traces the natural contours of the Badlands escarpment. There are 14 overlooks along the road that provide excellent views and the perfect place to take a family photo. The overlooks reveal prairie lands, pinnacles, and homesteads. Most overlooks are wheelchair accessible. There are also a couple picnic spots along the way that make excellent lunch breaks.

If you want a more adventurous drive, turn onto Sage Creek Road at the north end of the scenic loop. The road is rough and varied; make sure your vehicle has high clearance.

Highlights

There are a total of 14 marked overlooks along the route not including trail heads. Each overlook has an incredible view and it is well worth a stop at each one. If you simply drive the route it will take approximately one hours. However, if you like to look, linger, take photos and read the informational signs, you should plan on longer.

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