Summer is underway, and it’s the perfect time to explore new places! I had the opportunity to visit Fort Abraham Lincoln State Park near Mandan, and it was an entertaining, interesting and all-around fun experience.
Established in 1907, Fort Abraham Lincoln State Park is North Dakota’s oldest state park, and it presents many different ways to enjoy North Dakota’s rich history and beauty. Trails wind through the park, perfect for hiking, horseback riding, biking or merely enjoying nature’s splendor. If you are interested in photography, this is a wonderful place to practice your skills. Additionally, you have the option of camping at the park in cabins, at campsites or in tepees along the banks of the Missouri River. These are great aspects of many of North Dakota’s state parks.
After starting your excursion at the museum, visit the On-A-Slant Village for a look inside the reconstructed earth lodge homes of the Mandan tribe, containing intriguing relics from their lives. Imagine being a teenager living in one of those earth lodges!
Additionally, an incredible view of the city of Bismarck awaits you when you climb to the top of the infantry post block towers. Many of the views from the trails in the park overlook the river, but climbing to the top of a block tower will give you a beautiful view of both the sky and the river. A block tower is also a unique location for a group photo with your friends or family! Realistically reconstructed U.S. Army barracks and General George Custer’s large house are available for you to tour.
If you want a unique way to experience the park, consider riding the trolley. One of the trolley cars currently running is a restored 1890s streetcar that actually ran in Bismarck in the 1920s. Simply board the trolley in Mandan, and you will be able to ride to the park on an unforgettable round-trip tour. Don’t forget to stop at the gift shop!
Fort Abraham Lincoln State Park is just one of North Dakota’s amazing state parks, full of beauty and history that will educate you in fun ways! Visit your local state park this summer!
Amelie Johnson, 15, is a home-educated sophomore. She enjoys reading, writing, blogging, singing and spending time with friends and family. Amelie is the daughter of Ethan and Heidi Johnson, members of Capital Electric Cooperative.