Window Trail, Notch Trail - Window Trail - Door Trail Parking Area, Badlands National Park, South Dakota
Window Trail - 0.3 miles
Notch Trail - Window Trail - Door Trail Parking Area
|Round-Trip Length:||0.3 miles|
|Start-End Elevation:||2,665' - 2,665'|
|Elevation Change:||No Elevation Change|
Window Trail - 0.3 Miles Round-Trip
This short boardwalk-trail leads to sensational easterly views of the Badland Wall. Visitors will enjoy unimpeded vistas of dramatically carved spires, pinnacles, knives, fins, gullies and canyons.
The unforgiving impact of erosion is quite evident from this memorable viewpoint. Lighting is best in the late afternoon.
Stretching for nearly 60 miles east to west, The Badland Wall we see today was carved over the past 500,000 years by three river systems and millennia of rain, wind and exposure.
Predating and setting the stage for such a rapid occurrence, The White River (south of the park), eroded a scarp - a long steep slope or cliff at the edge of a plateau or ridge - in the Lower Plain.
Subsequent storms over the next 5 million years eroded away at this 'Wall-in-the-making', causing its crest to recede northward away from the river and toward the upper-lower plains. Erosion of the Badland Wall (and other Park formations) occurs at a rate of almost one inch per year, light-speed in geologic terms.
- N43 45.658 W101 55.650 — 0.0 Miles: Window Trailhead Area
- The Window Trail is best lit in the early morning and late afternoon.
- Though tempting for some, do not attempt to descend into the canyon country below the overlook. Easier access can be had from the Door Trail's boardwalk.
Directions to Trailhead
The Window Trail parking area is located approximately 2 miles northeast of the Ben Reifel Visitor Center on Highway 240. Parking spaces are abundant but can fill up quickly during peak times.
The Window Trailhead is located at the South end of the Parking Area.
Badlands National Park
25216 Ben Reifel Road
P.O. Box 6
Interior, SD 57750