The Group Travel Leader

FEB 2017

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GROUP TRAVEL LE ADER T H E park. Rangers also give guided talks on the trails during warmer months or cross- country skiing tours during the winter. Groups may also be interested in visiting nearby Fort Mandan, home of the Corps of Discovery during their stay in the area over the winter of 1804-1805. The site is home to the Lewis and Clark Interpretive Center and the reconstructed Fort Mandan. WWW.NPS.GOV/KNRI T heodore Roosevelt National Park in western North Dakota includes sites tied to the nation's 26th president while he lived in Dakota Territory. His time in the Dakotas helped to shape his strong conservationist views, so it's no surprise that the national park abounds with alluring, expansive landscapes and a bevy of wildlife. The park is divided into three units — the South, the Elkhorn and the North units — each with its own points of interest. The South is the main entrance to the park and includes the Maltese Cross Cabin, Roosevelt's first home in the area, next to the visi- tors center and museum. This area also boasts the Painted Canyon, known for its colorful vistas. The Elkhorn Ranch, where Roosevelt spent most of his time during his stay, is in the Elkhorn Unit, but only the home's foundations remain, and access is limited to high-profile vehicles. The North Unit includes a 14-mile scenic drive that leads to Oxbow Overlook and many hiking trails that give ample opportunity to explore the park's scenery. The hiking trails range from plenty of short, easy walks to strenuous trails for hard-core hikers. Groups may enjoy pairing a trip to the park and its historic sites with seeing "Medora the Musical," which tells the story of Theodore Roosevelt and the time he spent in the Dakota Territory. WWW.NPS.GOV/THRO F ort Abraham Lincoln was once an important military outpost in the Dakota Territory and was home to the Mandan tribe before it moved north to join the Hidatsa living near the Missouri and Knife rivers. One of the most popular things to see at the park is the recon- structed home of Lt. Col. George Armstrong Custer and his wife, Libbie. Custer was the first commander of the fort and served there from its beginnings until his death in the Battle of Little Big Horn. In addition to the commanding officer's house, groups can tour the various reconstructed buildings of the Cavalry Post and the ruins of On-A-Slant Village, overlooking the river. The Little Soldier Loop Trail provides excellent views of the village ruins and overlooks the Missouri and Heart rivers and the city of Bismarck. Groups with ample time may enjoy pairing a visit to North Dakota's Fort Abraham Lincoln State Park with a stop in Custer, South Dakota, — the site where the 7th Cavalry discovered gold in the Black Hills and began the gold rush — and nearby Custer State Park. Although these sites are separated by a six-hour drive, learning the full history of Custer's misfortunes and his influence on the settlement of the Black Hills will make for an interesting and history-filled trip. WWW.PARKREC.ND.GOV By Alexandria Shankweile, Courtesy NPS Courtesy NPS Courtesy Bismarck-Mandan CVB Courtesy Crazy Horse Memorial Foundation Courtesy NPS HORSEBACK RIDING IS A POPULAR ACTIVITY WITH GROUPS VISITING THEODORE ROOSEVELT NATIONAL PARK IN NORTH DAKOTA. EARTH LODGE, EXTERIOR THE RECONSTRUCTED EARTH LODGE AT KNIFE RIVER INDIAN VILLAGES THE COMMANDING OFFICERS HOUSE THEODORE ROOSEVELT NATIONAL PARK MEDORA, NORTH DAKOTA FORT ABRAHAM LINCOLN STATE PARK MANDAN, NORTH DAKOTA VIEW OF THE CRAZY HORSE MONUMENT

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