Hi there!

 

As it goes in Theodore Roosevelt National Park, there are many spots you can go to see the Little Missouri River!

And one of those spots is the River Bend Overlook, and it’s one of the 2 main overlooks in the North Unit to see the Little Missouri River.

This is located in the North Unit of Theodore Roosevelt National Park.

 

Hiking the River Bend Overlook Trail. driving the north unit scenic drive to river bend overlook in theodore roosevelt national park. north dakota travel blog

Hiking the River Bend Overlook Trail. driving the north unit scenic drive to river bend overlook in theodore roosevelt national park. north dakota travel blog

Getting to River Bend Overlook Trail. driving the north unit scenic drive to river bend overlook in theodore roosevelt national park. north dakota travel blog

 

 

Driving the North Unit scenic drive to River Bend Overlook

driving the north unit scenic drive to river bend overlook in theodore roosevelt national park. north dakota travel blog
👆 Driving along the North Unit Scenic Drive with around 5 minutes to go to get to River Bend Overlook.

 

You will find the River Bend Overlook along the North Unit Scenic Drive.

 

 

The River Bend Overlook is an easy stop to make as you are driving the North Unit scenic drive.

You’ll come across it as you’re driving.

The River Bend Overlook parking lot is located directly along the side of the road.

Then, there’s a short trail you can take to walk to the River Bend Overlook viewing deck. Then you can walk further down to the River Bend Overlook shelter.

 

river bend overlook trail. things to do in theodore roosevelt national park, north unit scenic drive. north dakota travel blog

 

 

Hiking trails from River Bend Overlook trailhead

Aside from the short trail that goes down for more views around the River Bend Overlook, you can also start hiking from the River Bend Overlook if you are looking for a day hike in the North Unit.

You can hike the Caprock Coulee Loop Trail from the River Bend Overlook trailhead. (This is possibly the best hike in the North Unit, and one of the best hikes in Theodore Roosevelt National Park… if not the best one!)

You can also hike the North Achenbach Trail to Oxbow Overlook from the River Bend Overlook trailhead. (It’s also possible to drive directly to the Oxbow Overlook.)

 

hiking trails near river bend overlook. theodore roosevelt. north dakota travel blog
👆 Hiking the Caprock Coulee Loop Trail from River Bend Overlook trailhead is around a 4.1 mile round trip hike. Hiking the North Achenbach Trail from River Bend Overlook to Oxbow Overlook is around a 9.2 mile round trip hike.

 

 

Cost to go to River Bend Overlook

River Bend Overlook is within the paid entry area of Theodore Roosevelt National Park.

 

theodore roosevelt national park north unit entry to get to river bend overlook. theodore roosevelt. north dakota travel blog

 

So in order to go to the River Bend Overlook, you need to pay the national park entry fee. In 2021, this was $30 per car for a 7-day pass. (There is no one-day pass.) See current fees.

 

cost of theodore roosevelt national park north unit entry to get to river bend overlook. theodore roosevelt. north dakota travel blog
👆 Cost of Theodore Roosevelt National Park entry fees in 2021.

 

If you will be visiting at least 3 national parks in one year, then you may want to consider getting the annual national parks pass.

 

 

More below about a quick stop to see the Little Missouri River from River Bend Overlook!

 

 

🌞

 



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Side note!

More of North Dakota: Things to do in Theodore Roosvelt National Park for VIEWS!

Where are you going after North Dakota?!

 

 

Now…

Driving to River Bend Overlook

Hiking the River Bend Overlook Trail. driving the north unit scenic drive to river bend overlook in theodore roosevelt national park. north dakota travel blog

 

River Bend Overlook is located around half way of the out-and-back North Unit Scenic Drive.

If you were to drive directly from the North Unit Visitor Center to the River Bend Overlook, then it would be around a 25 minute drive.

The North Unit Visitor Center is on the North Unit Scenic Drive and also right near the Theodore Roosevelt National Park North Unit entrance.

 

River Bend Overlook Trail map north unit scenic drive in theodore roosevelt national park. north dakota travel blog
Explore the map.

 

So, once you are on the North Unit Scenic Drive, you will basically just keep driving until you see the sign for the River Bend Overlook!

You will then come to the parking area located directly off the main road.

 

North Unit scenic drive to river bend overlook. theodore roosevelt. north dakota travel blog

North Unit scenic drive to river bend overlook. theodore roosevelt. north dakota travel blog

North Unit scenic drive to river bend overlook. theodore roosevelt. north dakota travel blog

North Unit scenic drive to river bend overlook. theodore roosevelt. north dakota travel blog

river bend overlook parking. theodore roosevelt. north dakota travel blog

river bend overlook parking. theodore roosevelt. north dakota travel blog

 

From the parking lot, it’s a short trail of less than a minute of walking to the River Bend Overlook viewing deck. This will give you views of the Little Missouri River from the highest up.

 

river bend overlook trailhead. theodore roosevelt. north dakota travel blog

river bend overlook trail. theodore roosevelt. north dakota travel blog

river bend overlook trail. theodore roosevelt. north dakota travel blog

river bend overlook trail. theodore roosevelt. north dakota travel blog

river bend overlook trail. theodore roosevelt. north dakota travel blog

river bend overlook trail guide. theodore roosevelt. north dakota travel blog

river bend overlook trail guide. theodore roosevelt. north dakota travel blog

river bend overlook trail guide. theodore roosevelt. north dakota travel blog

river bend overlook trail guide. theodore roosevelt. north dakota travel blog

river bend overlook from viewing deck. theodore roosevelt. north dakota travel blog

river bend overlook from viewing deck. theodore roosevelt. north dakota travel blog

river bend overlook from viewing deck. theodore roosevelt. north dakota travel blog

river bend overlook from viewing deck. theodore roosevelt. north dakota travel blog

 

You can take a little walk around the top to take in the views!

 

river bend overlook. theodore roosevelt. north dakota travel blog

river bend overlook. theodore roosevelt. north dakota travel blog

 

Then, you can also take a walk further down to the River Bend Overlook shelter that was built by the Civilian Conservation Corps to get closer views of the Little Missouri River from lower.

The trail is located right next to the viewing deck.

 

river bend overlook trail to ccc shelter. theodore roosevelt. north dakota travel blog

river bend overlook trail to ccc shelter. theodore roosevelt. north dakota travel blog

river bend overlook trail to ccc shelter. theodore roosevelt. north dakota travel blog

river bend overlook trail to ccc shelter. theodore roosevelt. north dakota travel blog

river bend overlook ccc shelter. theodore roosevelt. north dakota travel blog

river bend overlook ccc shelter. theodore roosevelt. north dakota travel blog

river bend overlook ccc shelter. theodore roosevelt. north dakota travel blog

 

And then after you’ve taken in the views, you can drive on for more of the North Unit!

 

north unit scenic drive from river bend overlook. theodore roosevelt. north dakota travel blog

 

Also see the other main overlook in the North Unit to see the Little Missouri River from above.

 

And that’s a bit about stopping at River Bend Overlook!

 

Plan more of your trip to the North Dakota badlands and beyond:

 

HAPPY VISIT TO THE RIVER BEND OVERLOOK!