A large portion of the badlands is full of bentonite clay.
Bentonite was formed from ancient volcanic ash, deposited millions
of years ago.
Common badlands plants include four types of Artemisia. The
First nations peoples who lived in the area used this plant to
remedy stomach pains and general ailments; they brewed it up as tea
to treat colds and coughs, and chewed it to relieve thirst.
Most of Alberta's dinosaur remains are found in the badlands and
river valleys where Cretaceous-aged sedimentary rocks are exposed.
The rock layers deposited after the dinosaurs became extinct were
scraped away be glaciers during the last ice age. Today, wind,
rain, and snow continue to erode the badlands, exposing more
fossils with each passing season.
Each year, almost half a centimetre of the soft rock erodes off
the tops of the hills and is ultimately carried away by the Red
This valley was first formed by flood waters from melting
glaciers during the last Ice Age and has been eroding ever
To log this earth cache please email the owner with the answers
to the following questions:
Bonus question: Early French Canadian fur trappers called this
- Bentonite clay looks harmless; what happens when moisture is
introduced into the clay?
- What is the common name for the plant "Artemisia"?
- How are "Benches" formed in the badlands?
- What type of fossilized wood can be found on the
Please post a photo of you and your GPS at the site.
As park visitors we are but temporary guests in a protected area
that is home to many animals and plants. In this very special place
we all have a responsibility to tread lightly.
When on the trails please remember:
In the Park all rocks, fossils, plants and animals are protected
by law from disturbance, excavation, removal or harassment. No
flower picking or fossil digging is allowed.
Keep all pets under control and on a two metre leash. Please use
litter pick-up bags.
Stay on formal trails as much as possible. If you must go
off-trail, keep off plants. Walk on bare rock or in "gullies" to
minimize long-term footprints.
Respect wildlife by not feeding them, and watch from a safe
distance. Report any unique sightings to park staff.
Pack out your litter! (Feel free to CITO other peoples when you