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North Dakota: Legendary. Follow the trail of legends
North Dakota Parks and Recreation Department

Maah Daah Hey Trail

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The term "Maah-Daah-Hey" comes from the Mandan Indian language meaning "Grandfather" and the trail symbol of a "Turtle" comes from the Lakota Indian’s symbolic meaning of long life and patience. Construction of the 96-mile long Maah-Daah-Hey Trail began in 1995 and was finished in 1999 in accordance with a three-partner effort between the North Dakota State Parks and Recreation Department (NDPRD), Theodore Roosevelt National Park (TRNP) and the United States Forest Service (USFS).

This area is full of unique geological formations and cultural resources. Native Americans used the area for annual hunting trips from the surrounding prairie. The MDH Trail passes by Theodore Roosevelt's Elkhorn Ranch site on the Little Missouri River as well as General Sully's Trail and the CCC Historical Site. Since its inception, the Maah-Daah-Hey Trail has become recognized as a premier non-motorized trail and has been featured in many national publications.

Length 96 miles
Grade average 8%, maximum 20%
Surface primary soil, secondary crushed rock, compacted
Amenities camping areas, corrals/hitching rails, fire rings, historical sites, parking, trailer parking areas, picnic areas, resorts/ranches, restrooms, interpretive signs, directional trail access information, trail intersections, trailheads, non-potable water


The trail runs from Sully Creek State Park south of Medora, north along the Little Missouri River, ending at the North Unit of Theodore Roosevelt National Park.

Locator Map


Contact Information

USDA Forest Service
161 21st West, Dickinson, ND 58601
Ph. 701.225.5151

Related Links

Maah Daah Hey Trail Association
Sully Creek State Park