Cliff Shelf Trail

Exploring and taking pictures –  Badlands National Park and vicinity, August 11, 2014

The Cliff Shelf Trail is a loop trail that follows boardwalks and climbs stairs through a juniper forest perched along the Badlands Wall.

2014-08-11 054 -1

2014-08-11 055 -1

Thousands of years ago, a massive stone broke away from the cliff above. Geologists believe that it fell with such force that it compacted the underlying layers of soil and other materials, reducing permeability and slowing drainage, retaining moisture and enabling a more lush vegetation.  This type of geological event is called a “slump.”

This is one of two places where we have seen rattlesnakes on a trail.  I wrote about this one in a 2007 blog post called Mommy!… Look at me! The little tyke from the 2007 post is in the little image inset into this photo from the same trail last month.

2014-08-11 056 -1

2014-08-11 058 -1

2014-08-11 067 -1

Badlands vegetation, where there is any, is more typically that of the mixed grass prairie, such as that in this photo.

2014-08-11 068 -1

More Badlands images in the future posts.

desert, hiking, landscape, parks, photography, places, plains, south dakota, travel, Travel Photos

Comments on this entry are closed.

%d bloggers like this:

This site uses cookies for various nonintrusive purposes. See our Privacy Policy for how they are used. By continuing to use the site, you agree to the use of cookies. more information

This notice is a European Union requirement for sites with advertising or sales. The cookie settings on this website are set to "allow cookies" to give you the best browsing experience possible. If you continue to use this website without changing your cookie settings or you click "Accept" below then you are consenting to this.

Close