Hiking Project Logo

blue Painted Canyon

  4.3 ( 3 ) Favorite

Trail

1.1 mile 1.8 kilometer loop
Intermediate

Elevation

Ascent: 262' 80 m
Descent: -261' -80 m
High: 2,780' 847 m
Low: 2,533' 772 m

Grade

Avg Grade: 9% (5°)
Max Grade: 20% (11°)

Dogs

No Dogs
Driving directions Take a virtual tour
Zoom in to see details
Map Key

Trail shared by Karen Ryberg

Weather

Getting forecast...

Current trail conditions

Unknown See History

Popular hikes nearby

Navigate on-trail with our free app

iOS App Store Android App Store

Hiked this trail?

Add details to help others plan their adventure.

This is a loop trail with a steep descent and steep return ascent and beautiful badlands scenery.

Karen Ryberg

Features Spring · Views · Wildflowers · Wildlife

Family Friendly This short trail with great views is located conveniently next to the visitor center.

Pets in the park must be restrained at all times, and are not permitted in park buildings, on trails, or in the backcountry. Be aware that dogs can agitate bison and other animals, creating a dangerous situation.

Overview

Start at the Painted Canyon Visitors Center, open seasonally May through October. If the visitors center is closed, you can still take the exit off Interstate 94 and park on the road in front of the gate and walk through the pedestrian gate. Do not block the vehicle gate as the Park Service needs to access the area for administrative and safety purposes.

Description

Proceed to the Visitors Center and go through the obvious pathway to the north side of the structure to the Painted Canyon Overlook. This is one of the most popular spots for viewing the scenery in the park.

Take the paved trail to your left, and you'll come to the Painted Canyon Nature Trail trailhead. Follow the trail down as it loops downward into the canyon, then back up. The ascent is steep and the maximum grade is 20% but not rated as difficult because of its short length.

Flora & Fauna

Bison, wild horses, juniper, native prairie grasses.

Contacts

Land Manager: NPS - Theodore Roosevelt

Rate This Featured Hike

Rate Quality


   Clear Rating

Rate Difficulty

Share This Hike

Check In

Check-Ins

Oct 3, 2018
Dave Buttner
1.1mi
Aug 17, 2018
Ar Wai
Aug 11, 2018
Tara Moses
Aug 7, 2018
Natalie Trapuzzano
1.1mi
Jul 31, 2018
Shari Pederson
Jul 30, 2018
Aaron Fagerwick
0.9mi — 0h 21m
Jul 30, 2018
Shari Pederson
Jul 6, 2018
Leslie Enerson

Trail Ratings

  4.3 from 3 votes

#3

in South Unit

#2419

Overall
  4.3 from 3 votes
5 Star
33%
4 Star
67%
3 Star
0%
2 Star
0%
1 Star
0%
Rankings

#3

in South Unit

#11

in North Dakota

#2,419

Overall
74 Views Last Month
1,161 Since Sep 9, 2015
Intermediate Intermediate

0%
25%
75%
0%
0%
0%

0 Comments

Hiking Project is part of the REI Co-op family,
where a life outdoors is a life well lived.

Shop REI Hiking