With temperatures steadily rising, North Dakota’s landscape and tourism experiences are set to welcome spring and visitors who are ready to partake in all that the season has to offer. In celebration of the newly awakened landscape, North Dakota Tourism invites visitors to experience the best of the state’s outdoor adventures, the beginning of golf season, and seasonal, locally-sourced dining.
Explore the Outdoors at Awe-Inspiring Parks
Home to iconic national park sites and 13 state parks, North Dakota boasts the trails and outdoor experiences that really showcase the season. Set in the western region of the state, Theodore Roosevelt National Park (TRNP) is home to 70,000 acres of brilliantly painted canyons and miles of grassy hiking trails in the North Dakota badlands. TRNP offers a full system of trails to fit any experience level and visitors can enjoy a waived entrance fee to the park on April 16 to kick off National Park Week.
Rich in both scenery and history, the park is made up of two large units separated by the Elkhorn Ranch Unit – known as President Theodore Roosevelt’s North Dakota home – along the Little Missouri River. The South Unit, sitting adjacent to the small, bustling town of Medora, is the most visited area of the park. While in the South Unit, be sure to lace up your hiking boots and set out on the half-mile loop to Wind Canyon. This short loop travels alongside wind-eroded cliffs to the perfect place to watch the sunset over the colorful badlands. For visitors looking to adventure off the beaten path, the North Unit, located near Watford City, is known for its rugged beauty and one of the most iconic views in the park, Oxbow Overlook, offering sweeping panoramic views of the badlands and the Little Missouri River.
Dust Off the Clubs for Spring Rounds
Tee times beckon for those ready to hit the links and North Dakota’s wide-open spaces are the ideal setting for golf courses with stunning views and challenging elevations. Take the Triple Golf Challenge and experience some of the best golfing to be had in North Dakota at three incredible golf courses.
The Links of North Dakota in Ray offers golfers a true links-style game experience with gorgeous views of the bluffs at Lake Sakakawea on almost every hole. The Links is nationally recognized for its authentic golfing experience and features an 18-hole championship course with bentgrass greens and plenty of sand bunkers.
In the heart of Medora, Bully Pulpit Golf Course, opening May 1, is one of the most unique and challenging golf courses in North Dakota. Named after a term coined by former President Theodore Roosevelt, the course is fully immersed in the badlands and showcases beautiful views across the greens. Toward the end of the 18-hole course, golfers are met with Bully Pulpit’s infamous “Badlands Holes,” carved out of the badlands landscape and featuring a 120-yard drop from the tee to the fairway.
Natural hills and contours, brilliant coloration, plentiful wildlife, and native grasses add mightily to the eco experience at Hawktree Golf Club near Bismarck. Black sand bunkers and the devilish design by architect Jim Engh present a layout that will have you feeling you've played 18 one-hole golf courses. No club will go unused on this picture-perfect course sculpted from land nearby the Missouri River.
Indulge in Fresh Menus with Local, Seasonal Eats
Eating like the locals is part of the experience while visiting North Dakota, especially when the ingredients are local too. Farm-to-table restaurants can be found in many cities and towns across the state, with seasonally changing menus to promote the use of produce, proteins, and grains right from the Midwest.
Savor the best of the season with James Beard Award Outstanding Chef Semifinalist Austin Covert at Rosewild in Fargo, weekly local and fresh menus at Ely’s Ivy in Grand Forks. There are abundant options to choose from for local, spring-inspired dishes and brews throughout the state. Check out the state’s many farm-to-table restaurants and breweries here.
Follow North Dakota Tourism on Facebook at www.facebook.com/TravelND, on Instagram at https://www.instagram.com/northdakotalegendary/ or on Twitter at http://twitter.com/NorthDakota and get tips on what to see and do all year long.