Road Rube Rides
Theodore national Park Loop
Distance: 24 miles
Time: 51 minutes
Theodore Roosevelt National Park Loop is a slow ride through grand scenery, wildlife, and tourists
Any trip through a National Park is a double-edged sword. Riding through on your motorcycle immerses you into the landscape and scenery. People who go in their cars and campers have to stop and get out to get the same experience. And they do. A lot.
I was stopped in a line of traffic at Yellowstone last year. People were gawking at Elk on the side of the road. There was an elk five feet from me. I was a little nervous out in the open on my bike like that, but along comes a woman holding a kid’s hand walking in the five feet between me and the elk. Theodore Roosevelt National Park has the same level of visitor interaction.
Cars stop in the middle of the lane to get out of the car to get a closer look at all the wildlife. A wild horse ran straight at me from the opposite ditch and cut behind my bike. I sat there wondering what a charging horse would do to me. Moments later a Ansel Adams son of a bitch holding a camera with a huge lens comes stalking out of the woods. Pretty sure the horse wasn’t charging me. He was running from the idiot in the woods.
Anyway, Theodore Roosevelt National Park is a beautiful version of the South Dakota Badlands. The scenery is great. There is a lot of wildlife. People even stopped in the middle of the road to get out and take pictures of prairie dogs out in the grass. I saw a herd of buffalo in the distance on the north end of the park. But the huge piles of shit on the roads suggest they make appearances on the loop too.
Follow the signs off of I-94 to Medora to the entrance of the park. The drive is a loop. But in mid-June 2019 part of the loop was closed due to “road failure”. The road is closed at the Badlands Overlook. Turn around and head back from there.
The scenery is really beautiful. The speeds are 25 mph to 35 mph. The caged tourists make it a little frustrating. Just plan to spend extra time in the park. Don’t get too frustrated with the tourists.
The Bottom Line
Theodore Roosevelt National Park is a gem. North Dakota has some great scenery out west. Ride it. And tell your friends about the strange things that happened to you.