Dean M. Chriss
Badlands, Spring Morning
(Click image to enlarge)
In spring Badlands National Park briefly turns rich shades of green and yellow
as native grasses and other plants bloom. On this occasion thick fog that
limited views to no more than a couple of dozen feet was clearing to reveal the
vast landscape in mottled light.
Badlands National park protects 242,756 acres (98240 Ha) of sharply eroded
buttes and pinnacles, along with the largest undisturbed mixed grass prairie in
the United States. Part of this area is a 64,144 acre (25958 Ha) designated
wilderness area. This wilderness is one site where black-footed ferrets, one of
the most endangered mammals in the world, was reintroduced. The U.S. National
Park Service manages the park, with the South Unit being co-managed with the
Oglala Lakota tribe.