Geology of Badlands National Park: a preliminary report

Open-File Report 2003-35



Badlands National Park is host to perhaps the most scenic geology and landscape features in the Western Interior region of the United States. Ongoing erosion that forms the "badlands" exposes ancient sedimentary strata of Late Cretaceous through Oligocene age. Quaternary erosional and depositional processes are responsible for most of the modern landscape features in the park and surrounding region. This report provides a basic overview of the park geology The discussions presented within include both well-established concepts and theories and new, preliminary data and interpretations. Much emphasis is placed on presenting information about the oldest and least studied rocks in the park (particularly the Late Cretaceous and earliest Tertiary deposits that underlie the White River beds throughout the park region). Rock formations and selected fossils they contain are described. Faults, folds, unconformities, and other geologic structures in the North Unit of the park are illustrated, including features associated with the Sage Creek anticline and fault system.

Study Area

Additional publication details

Publication type Report
Publication Subtype USGS Numbered Series
Title Geology of Badlands National Park: a preliminary report
Series title Open-File Report
Series number 2003-35
DOI 10.3133/ofr0335
Year Published 2003
Language English
Publisher U.S. Geological Survey
Publisher location Reston, VA
Contributing office(s) Geology, Minerals, Energy and Geophysics Science Center
Description 63 p.
Country United States
State South Dakota
Other Geospatial Badlands National Park
Additional Online Files (Y/N) N