The Badlands National Park in South Dakota is one of those places you have to see to understand the name "Badlands". The first time I visited the park I had no idea of the beauty of the park. I have tried to capture it with my camera but nothing can take the place of being there.
The Lakota people were the first to call this place "mako sica" or "land bad." Extreme temperatures, lack of water, and the exposed rugged terrain led to this name. In the early 1900's, French-Canadian fur trappers called it "les mauvais terres pour traverse," or "bad lands to travel through."
Today, the term badlands has a more geologic definition. Badlands form when soft sedimentary rock is extensively eroded in a dry climate. The park's typical scenery of sharp spires, gullies, and ridges is a premier example of badlands topography.