We visited Custer State Park and drove the Wildlife Loop this afternoon. The Wildlife Loop Road (SD Highways 87 and 16A) in Custer State Park is pure nature at its best. There are open grasslands and rolling hills speckled with pine. Many of the park's wildlife species occupy this area and are commonly seen. We saw a lot of buffalo, some with babies chasing them trying to nurse as mama crossed the street in front of us. We also saw pronghorns, deer, prairie dogs, and numerous birds.
Also, some of the park's wild "begging" burros live at the southernmost end of this road. We stopped and bought a five pound bag of carrots, the last time we visited the park we fed so many burros we gave out, we wanted to be prepared this time. We were a bit disappointed, all of them were behind fences. I don’t know if this was just for today or if they are now fenced permanently, but we held carrots at the fence and they would not even come to the fence for them. They must be well fed now. :-)
Anyway, we certainly enjoyed the drive. The 18-mile route follows the diverse landscape offering views of mountain foothills, prairie meadows and lush streambeds. My pictures do not do this beautiful park justice. The park is home to one of the world's largest publicly-owned bison herds. It was fun watching them right in front of our car. It was another awesome day in South Dakota, check back later for more.