My family and I enjoyed a trip to Medora and Theodore Roosevelt National Park over the July 4 weekend. While we have made this trip many times, we were excited to check out some of the new offerings. I recommend the new Gospel Brunch, which shows Saturday and Sunday mornings in the chuckwagon. The quality of the food and entertainment was impressive. Even my 16-year-old sons enjoyed the lively entertainment (and the fresh bacon and caramel rolls!). The variety of entertainment offered reminded me of Branson., Mo., only better – since several of the performances were free and outdoors in the perfect summer weather. There is a full lineup scheduled throughout the summer.
A holiday weekend wouldn’t be complete without lots of great food. Badlands Pizza and Saloon offers upscale pizza, salads and sandwiches with a good wine selection and alfresco dining in cowboy casual style. I am not much for convenience store food normally, but the Medora Convenience Store, I recently learned, is famous for its breakfast sandwiches, which were a perfect pick-up before heading into the park for a long hike. The new balcony on the Little Missouri Saloon gives you a vantage point to plan your next day’s activities. And what’s not to love about a town with a population of 132 and three ice cream shops?
While traffic was steady in Theodore Roosevelt National Park, we never felt rushed and the efficient park staff kept the line short. The wildlife was active: herds of buffalo and wild horses, deer and prairie dogs, of course. The Little Missouri River’s flow has slowed so we had no problems crossing near Peaceful Valley Ranch to hike along the Maah Daah Hey Trail. Even on the more remote trails we met other hikers.
I often hear the comment, “we have been to Medora.” But I would challenge anyone to visit again and check out all that is new and wonderful in this gateway city as we celebrate the 100th anniversary of our great national parks.