Those who want to fully experience natural wonders and unique challenges may choose to set up camp in the Badlands. A striking natural paradox, the Badlands of South Dakota consists of deep gorges, sharp granite spires, and rolling valleys. The product of millions of years of erosion and glacial recession, this somewhat ominous but always awe-inspiring region is one of the most popular tourist destinations in the state of South Dakota.
The Badlands National Park offers two year-round campgrounds. Between the two campgrounds, a total of 1,125 campsites are available. Both are operated by the Park Service. Tents and RVs are permitted.
For backpackers seeking a wilderness adventure, backcountry camping is also permitted in the Badlands. Camp can be set up anywhere beyond ½ mile from the park roads.
When camping in the Badlands, be sure to come prepared for anything. Visitors can expect dramatic temperature extremes, roaring winter winds, and raging summer thunderstorms. Also note that open campfires are not permitted in the Badlands National Park. Avoid setting up camp near bison trails, and try to use previously camped areas so you don’t damage new vegetative growth. In general, this region is more suitable for experienced campers.