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Favorite thing: North Dakota was first settled by Native Americans several thousand years ago. The major tribes in the area by the time of settlement were the Mandan, Hidatsa, Arikara, Sioux, and Chippewa. North Dakota was explored by French Canadians in 1738–1740 and acquired by the U.S. in 1803. The first settlements were made at Pembina in 1812 by Scottish and Irish families while the area was in dispute between the U.S. and Great Britain. In 1818, the U.S. obtained the northeast part of North Dakota by treaty with Great Britain and took possession of Pembina in 1823. North Dakota gained statehood in 1889
Written May 9, 2011
Favorite thing: Fort Lincoln, Bismarck, ND is a partly reconstructed military fort well worth the visit. Don't forget to visit Custer's house which has a lot of original furniture to be seen.
Updated Mar 18, 2006
Favorite thing: When Lewis and Clark first followed the Missouri River across North Dakota just over 200 years ago they witnessed great herds of Bison (Buffalo) as far as the eye could see. There were also large numbers of Pronghorn (Antelope), and the expedition encountered their first Grizzly Bear in North Dakota. Other animals they recorded seeing included whitetail deer, moose, prairie dogs, gray wolves, and many other species.
By the late 1800s, with the advancement of white settlers, Bison and Elk had both disappeared from North Dakota. But that was then. Today both Bison and Elk have been reintroduced and have regained viable breeding herds in the state. Because of conservative agricultural practices deer and moose are probably more abundant and with wider ranges now than in pre-settlement times. Prarie dogs are holding their own, but in much smaller numbers than before wheat was planted and ranches established.
The Grizzly can now only be found in the Rocky Mountains, further west. Wolves are now very rarely seen in North Dakota, usually strays who wander over the line from Canada. However, with their demise the population of coyotes and red fox have increased.
North Dakota is also known for it's abundance of gamebirds, including pheasant, turkey, prairie chicken and numerous species of waterfowl. The best places to see waterfowl and moose are in the eastern part of the state. Deer are abundant throughout the state, and pronghorn, elk and bison are scattered in the western areas.
Fondest memory: In the Badlands of western North Dakota I saw a colony of prairie dogs beside the highway and decided to take a hike across the prairie through their "town". My presence frightened the barking rodents, so I was unable to get a good photo of them. However, about a quarter-mile from the highway I topped a small rise and saw this maginificant bull bison. I quickly took this photo and backed away. If he had come my way there would have been nowhere for me to hide except down a prairie dog hole, and I don't think I would have fit.
North Dakota Wildlife: Then and Now
Updated Feb 14, 2005
Favorite thing: Get ready to hear a lot about the Missouri River in 2004 as the Lewis and Clark bicentenial kicks off. After the third U.S. President Thomas Jefferson purchased the area known as Louisianna from France, he realized that he hadn't the slightest idea what he had bought. He enlisted the aid of two intrepid explorers and journal keepers to give him an accounting of what was now the American West. Meriwether Lewis and William Clark commenced their epic journey on May 14, 1804; wintered along the Missouri at camp Mandan in 1804-05; wintered on the Oregon coast in 1805-06 and with breakneck speed were able to return to St. Louis by September 23, 1806.
The expedition utilized the Missouri River for the majority of their trip passing through what are now the states of Missouri, Iowa, Nebraska, South Dakota, North Dakota and Montana.
For more info try: www.pbs.org/lewisandclark
Updated Apr 3, 2004
Favorite thing: Abandoned homesteads are all too common in rural North Dakota. The rural towns are dying and people are leaving their family farms. The population of North Dakota stood at 680,000 in 1930. According to the 2000 census the population of North Dakota is 642,000. North Dakota is one of the few, if not only, states in the U.S. to drop in total population over that seventy year span (neighboring Minnesota increased its population from 2.5 million to 4.9 million over that same time).
Updated Oct 27, 2003
Favorite thing: Not exactly amber waves of grain; more like flourescent yellow waves of grain. Canola seems to be a growing cash crop in North Dakota and Saskatchewan. I've been using Canola oil in some of my cooking, but had no idea that we'd run into these intense bright fields on our journey west.
Look at: www.canola.com for more information about canola than you would ever want to know. For example, I found out that each miniscule canola seed is approximately 40% oil and that refined canola oil has a low level of saturated fat (7%) and that its level of healthy monounsaturated fat is an astounding 61%.
Written Aug 23, 2003
Favorite thing: Sure, in places, North Dakota can be a flat prairie suitable only for growing hay. But another ten or twenty miles along the road will likely bring a completely different view. North Dakota is an interesting place, but few people ever get to this northern plains state because it is so remote so scarcely populated. I enjoy driving lengthy distances (50 or more miles between towns) so North Dakota suited me just fine. People with short attention spans may do well to avoid North Dakota.
Written Aug 23, 2003
Favorite thing: North Dakota is not exactly a mountainous state. However, it is not nearly as flat as you might think. To my eye, the terrain is pleasantly sloping with an occasional large rock formation. The western part of the state is dominated by badlands that are anything but flat. Another surprising fact might be the number of ponds and marshes. The northern part of the state is very marshy and is home to all kinds of waterfowl.
Fondest memory: The amber waves of grain that are the canola fields. Canola is a relatively new crop and it turns the fields of North Dakota into a brilliant yellow tapestry.
Written Aug 4, 2003
Favorite thing: After travelling through north-woods and along great lakes, we finally made it back to the prairies. This photo could be either Minnesota or North Dakota, but as I have fewer pictures for North Dakota, so far, I'll put it in North Dakota.
Written Feb 25, 2003
Favorite thing: Visit Medora, west North Dakota. It is a very small town but has lots of gift shops, food and fun. You can play miniture golf, walk the dirt roads, visit the gift shops for souvenirs, and overall you can't miss the 'Medora Musical'! The best time to go is in the summer when it's nice and warm/hot and plenty to do.
Fondest memory: North Dakota is a great place to raise a family. It has fresh air, friendly people, affordable living, 4 seasons to enjoy, white Christmas, cities are all 'family-communities', and a great place to meet friends. The fondest memories are all the years that I lived there.
Written Sep 12, 2002
Hilton Garden Inn Fargo Fargo
1 Review and 128 Opinions With a Hilton Garden Inn you know that you will get the same clean hotel, same basic layout, and...
1 Review and 74 Opinions I have stayed at every spot in Bismarck and this is the cleanest. Has a few work-out machines, small...