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Today’s National Park Showcase? Teddy Roos National Park

No Comments 27 April 2012

On April 25, 1947 President Truman officially named 3 separated areas of the North Dakota badlands as Teddy Roosevelt National Memorial Park.  TR originally came to this area in late 1883 to hunt bison as a scrawny good for nothing New Yorker.  He quickly fell in love with the vastness and natural beauty that encompassed the Dakota territory and decided to try his hand at cattle ranching.  He spent the better part of the next 5 years in the Dakota territory raising cattle and exploring the area that he called “the love of his life.”

After his death in 1919 explorations into possible park sites were underway. Two features of the park are the 2 different ranches that he lived in during his time there, the Maltese Cross Cabin and Elkhorn Ranch. The Maltese Cross is available for year round viewing while the Elkhorn is in a more remote area and you should use caution depending upon weather conditions. Travelling through the park on foot or by horseback you will find out why Teddy fell in love with this place. Herds of bison and wild horse still roam the area today as well as some other critters of nature’s finest beings. From the landscapes to the wildlife to the nighttime star gazing this 70,000+ acres of western North Dakota has plenty to offer even the most modest outdoorsman.

Teddy travelled this country far and wide setting aside lands that he felt should not be destroyed by the hand of man and we owe it all to the inspiration he felt in the Dakota territory. He has said many times over that if it wasn’t for what he learned and observed during his ranching days in the Dakotas he would not have pressed on the way he did to become president. He owed it to the natural beauty of this country to become President and reserve lands for future generations and we owe it to him to get outside and enjoy a national park. Nice job Teddy…and pick up your damned Cliff Bar wrapper, JERK!

“While my interest in natural history has added very little to my sum of achievement, it has added immeasurably to my sum of enjoyment in life.”  –TR

Ralph Turrnackle

Office of Outdoor Enthusiasts


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