Monday, October 26, 2015

Featured Nat'l Recreation Trail: Maah Daah Hey Trail, North Dakota - Full Article

The trail passes through some of the most pristine remote areas of the USDA's National Grasslands.

Photos by Chuck Haney

The Maah Daah Hey (MDH) trail is a 96-mile long recreational trail that winds its way through the rugged badlands and rolling prairies of western North Dakota and is Region One's latest addition the National Recreational Trail system.

The name Maah Daah Hey is derived from the Native American Mandan language meaning "grandfather" or "long lasting," and is used to describe an area that has been around for a long time and deserving of respect. The badlands are the most treacherous part of the Grasslands, consisting of canyons and gullies that were carved into the landscape by perpetual wind and water erosion. There are six campgrounds on the trail, one at each trailhead and four others spaced approximately twenty miles apart along the trail.

The MDH is a non-motorized trail and is nationally recognized as a premier backpacking, mountain biking, and horseback riding trail and is the backbone of the recreation program on the Dakota Prairie Grasslands (DPG). The DPG continues to build on the success of the MDH by expanding the trails program using the MDH as the base, resulting in increased recreational opportunities for the public and benefiting local economies.

The MDH Trail came into being as a three-partner effort, the North Dakota State Park and Recreation, Theodore Roosevelt National Park and the United States Forest Service Dakota Prairie Grasslands. The MDH Trail connects the three units of the Theodore Roosevelt National Park...

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