Photo: Mountain biker in grass

A mountain biker pedals the Maah Dahh Hey Trail near Medora, North Dakota.

Photograph by Danita Delimont, Alamy

Pop. 93
GPS: 46°54'N, 103°31'W

Theodore Roosevelt National Park backs right up to Medora, where you can watch roaming feral horses, bison, and prairie dogs, and of course, explore its Badlands—colorful pillars of sandstone, siltstone, and mudstone that stretch for miles.


The national park doesn't allow bikes to off-road, keeping the grasslands and prairies serene. Hike some of the 96-mile (154-kilometer) Maah Daah Hey Trail (, or cycle Andrew's Trail, rumored to be North Dakota's best singletrack (bike rentals from $30 a day;


If you like to eat your ribeyes off of a pitchfork, check out the Pitchfork Steak Fondue. Your meal is grilled to live western tunes atop a badlands bluff (+1 701 623 4444).


Bunk down at the Rough Riders Hotel, which also has an impressive restaurant. But the close-by railroad is still very much active, and conductors are known to blow their whistles through the night (doubles from $159; +1 701 623 4422).