Summer hills in the Killdeer Badlands invite intrepid walkers into hidden places of quiet and beauty.
There’s an amazing, beautiful, and mystical place tucked away in the hills of southern Saskatchewan, perhaps a kilometre or two north of the Canada/US border. It lies so close to Montana, in fact, one could almost throw a stone across the way. This magical place is now called the East Block of the Grasslands National Park. Forgive me, Parks Canada, I still call it the Killdeer Badlands. The locals do, too! Most of the time. It’s nestled quietly in the heart of the Wood Mountain Uplands which stretch nearly 200 km from east to west along the 49th parallel. The uplands range from the Big Muddy Badlands in the east, to the Frenchman River Valley in the west—slightly to the east of the Cypress Hills. They are one of only four areas in all of North America untouched by glaciation.
Deep coulees, canyons, and mammoth hills grace their landscape. Rising higher than the ice fields of the last glacial period, their maximum elevation is slightly over 1,000 metres. The Grasslands National Park in Saskatchewan is the only national park in all of Canada representing the mixed-grass prairie ecosystem. Lush green grass in the spring, vibrant wildflowers, and wide open spaces abound here in this semi-arid rangeland.
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