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On the Trail: Makoshika offers a dozen hikes through Montana's Badlands

Posted at 5:24 AM, Jun 09, 2023
and last updated 2023-06-09 11:40:20-04

GLENDIVE — It's the season we've all been waiting for - cold, dark days are over and summer is here.

While there's still snow in the mountains, June can be a good time to take a hike in the hotter stretches of our area.

Montana's largest state park, the mighty Makoshika in Glendive, has a dozen hiking trails of varying lengths.

One of the most popular of these trails is the Cap Rock trail, a short but steep half-mile loop with ups, downs, washed-out creek bottoms, and fascinating rock formations.

“Makoshika has a lot of magic," said Riley Bell, recreation manager of Makoshika State Park. "It’s one of those things you have to see it to enjoy it, you can’t just see pictures you have to come and see it for yourself and get the Badlands experience.”

Bell says the park has seen an uptick in visitors since the COVID-19 pandemic and clocked more than 104,000 visitors last year.

Bell says the park has big plans this summer.

“We have trivia nights, youth programs, campfire programs, paleo experiences, Buzzard Days, a September music festival, archery and more. It's a busy time out here in Makoshika.”

Jeremy Rogers from Cleveland, Ohio, was visiting the park recently.

“We are actually spraying at Williston, North Dakota. We are in the military and we do an aerial spray mission to reduce the mosquito population and we actually got off early today and decided to go to Montana to go hiking. Very impressed, very beautiful," Rogers said.

Bell says visitors should bring plenty of water and sun protection, as the Badlands can get hot.

“If you’re out on the trails, watch out for rattlesnakes, we do have a few," Bell said.

More information on Makoshika can be found here.