Makoshika State Park

When we drove out here for my husband's job interview in September, we ended up having to spend several hours waiting on our hotel room to be ready. So we decided we would go some place where we could wander around without a lot of people seeing how we looked after being in the truck for 2 days straight.  Yeah, we looked horrible!

We knew there was a state park in the area that we wanted to see, so we headed to Makoshika State Park.

The name Makoshika (Ma-ko'-shi-ka) is a variant spelling of a Lakota phrase meaning 'bad land' or 'bad earth'.

Today, as Montana's largest state park, the badlands of Makoshika are set aside for visitors to see and enjoy. In addition to the pine and juniper studded badland formations, the park also houses the fossil remains of such dinosaurs as Tyrannosaurus Rex and Triceratops.

We were quite surprised by all the beauty we found in this park. When we topped the hill and saw the "canyon" (badlands) it was amazing.  

The wind was blowing that day and we were able to walk out to the edge (with no railing). Of course, we didn't walk to the edge edge because of the wind and the ground being soft. Standing above the canyon and the huge clouds blowing over head was... how can I say this... it left me speechless! We couldn't talk, it was so amazing.

While we were hiking up hills and down into areas, we noticed the evidence of horses being around.  We talked about how there were no shoe prints in the dirt.  Sure enough we found the wild horses over near the amphitheater at the top. They were grazing in the field and there were three little fellows with their mommas.

While we were sitting and taking pictures a park ranger came through and began making noise so they would not get too close to vehicles and become easy access to visitors.

We learned the dark stripes in the hills are layers of coal. I can't remember what the other layers are right off the top of my head and I can't find my notebook, where I wrote things down.  But any way, I've been wanting to share our first field trip pictures and now's a good time to do just that.