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Caprock Coulee Trail

Intermediate
 4.5 (2)

Run with the bison and Teddy Roosevelt.


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Map Key

3.3

Miles

5.3

KM

89%

Runnable

2,446' 746 m

High

2,053' 626 m

Low

417' 127 m

Up

528' 161 m

Down

5%

Avg Grade (3°)

22%

Max Grade (13°)

Dogs No Dogs

Features Fall Colors · River/Creek · Views · Wildflowers · Wildlife

National Park rules and restrictions apply.

Runner Notes

Watch out for bison, rattlesnakes, and slippery mud (bentonite clay). Can be very hot in the summer. Ticks in the spring.

Description

From the end of the self-guided Caprock Coulee Nature Trail, turn left and cross a small bridge over a stream. If this section is wet the trail may be hard to follow. Generally head south until you find the wooden steps heading uphill.

The trail then enters a section of trees the circles back uphill until you reach an overlook with stunning views of the park. Continue following the trail while taking in the views and looking for bison.

The trail then crosses the scenic road and winds along the road until you reach a parking lot for the River Bend Overlook. Here there is a short trail to an old CCC shelter with expansive views of the Little Missouri and south side of the park.

Go to the east end of the parking lot where the trail is right next to the guardrail for the road. The trail then heads right and down a steep incline before following a narrow ridge. This section of the trail can be hard to follow, but look for round wooden posts serving as stairs to let you know you are on the trail. Also, you'll cross a few layers of bentonite, and if they are wet, they can be very slippery.

Continue onward, trying to not fall of off the trail while taking in the sights. The trail drops steeply downhill until you reach the Scenic Road and the parking lot you started at. Don't forget to sign out at the register.

Flora & Fauna

Bison! Deer, coyotes, mountain lion, longhorn cattle.

Contacts

Land Manager: NPS - Theodore Roosevelt

Shared By:

ktboundary Thompson

Trail Ratings

  4.5 from 2 votes

#1

in North Unit

#7975

Overall
  4.5 from 2 votes
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Trail Rankings

#1

in North Unit

#20

in North Dakota

#7,975

Overall
3 Views Last Month
157 Since May 25, 2017
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Photos

View of the Little Missouri and southern part of the park.
Apr 19, 2015 near Watford…, ND
Bison near the Caprock Coulee Trail
Dec 26, 2018 near Watford…, ND
Looking southwest to the Little Missouri and the direction of travel.
Apr 21, 2015 near Watford…, ND
Sunset brings out the rippling topography surrounding the River Bend Overlook. Photo credit: NPS/Dave Bruner.
May 25, 2017 near Watford…, ND

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