Theodore Roosevelt National Park

East on Interstate 94 about an hour from us was the town of Medora, ND, the gateway to the South Unit of the National Park. As we drove in we talked about how it looked like more badlands, but the beauty became apparent as we followed the Little Missouri River through herds of American Bison and wild horses just as back in Teddy’s days here. The story of his heartbreak, both his mother and his wife passing away on Valentine’s Day 1884 in New York, his sadness, and recovery in the Badlands of North Dakota! We followed winding roads and stopped for every hike we could (duly recorded on Strava).

Our first hike was Wind Canyon Trail with great vistas and it sure lived up to it’s name!

We saw several herds of American Bison throughout the park. One large herd crossed the road in front of us, many were way off in the distance, but this herd was lounging right next to the road, personally it was warm enough we thought they should be near or in the river or in the trees over yonder!

The wild horses were a favorite! At first we saw several herds way off in the distance, but on our way out we caught this herd just above the road! Ranchers back in the 1800’s would turn their horses out on the open ranger to live and breed. When needed they would round up the horses and their offspring for use as ranch horses. These are descendants of those horses!

This was a walk we took to the Old East Entrance of the park, through quite a heavily populated city of prairie dogs, and one bald eagle who was feasting, we presume on prairie dog! (see photo with blue circle)

Buck Hill was a great view point. Keith took a 360 degree video, but no still photos other than some modern day cairns (somebody had some time on their hands!) Alas, our blog won’t let us post videos. It was a fairly steep climb, but we are getting our climbing muscles toned up!

By this time we were starting to get tired and hungry, we turned at the sign that pointed the way to the Coal Vein Fire, but didn’t do the walk. We wish we had! A vein of coal burned from 1951 to 1977!

Another great day in the Book of Joiner! Joiner’s Journey continues as we make our way east tomorrow, Saturday, August 8 about 3/4’s of the way across the state of North Dakota to Valley City and West Ashtabula Crossing!

We sure miss Goober!

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