Badlands – North Dakota

On September 22, we moved to Boot’s Campground in Billings County, North Dakota.  We went to three national park sites while there, one being Fort Union Trading Post, one being Knife River Indian Villages NHS, and the last being Theodore Roosevelt National Park.

Fort Union Trading Post was an important trading post for Native Americans between 1828 and 1867.  They would trade furs from many different kinds of animals for goods from all around the world, including blankets and beads.  We got to walk around the fort and touch different animal furs.

Knife River Indian Villages was where Hidatsa Native Americans and other groups traded and met together.  It used to be a major trading and agricultural area until around 1840, when smallpox outbreaks killed most of the population there.

We went to the visitor center there, then we got to go into the reconstructed earth lodge.  The earth lodge looked like a hill from the outside, but in the front, there was a door.  The door led through a short but low tunnel, then into a large, circular room.  The room had beds, blankets, a fire, and some other things.

Theodore Roosevelt National Park is where Theodore Roosevelt established a ranch in 1884.  We went on a drive through the badlands and saw prairie dog towns and went on a short hike.  The prairie dogs were cute, making barking and chirping noises.  They could pop out and in their holes super quick, and Chip and Ruby barked at them from our car.

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