Intriguing Landscapes and Abundant Wildlife in the South Dakota Badlands
June 6 – 10, 2024
In a vast landscape that was once an ancient sea, thousands of years of rain and wind have transformed layers of sedimentary rock, mudstone, and volcanic ash into one of North America’s most dramatic geologic features. The eroded and colorfully striped buttes, jagged peaks, and steep canyons of the Badlands are surrounded by the largest mixed-grass prairie remaining on the continent.
In addition to outstanding opportunities for landscape and interpretive nature images, we’ll have plenty of opportunities to photograph wildlife, including bison, bighorn sheep, pronghorn, and prairie dogs. Be ready for non-stop photography and instruction from sunrise to sunset and beyond.
Our workshop is timed for the season of green grasses, wildflowers, young animals, and dramatic skies created by the tremendous lighting and thunderstorms that roll across the plains. The workshop includes a doors-off helicopter tour over the visually striking buttes and valleys of the Badlands.
Muench Workshops is an Authorized Permittee of the National Park Service.
This itinerary is subject to change due to weather, local conditions, and other factors.
June 6, 2024: Arrive in Rapid City, South Dakota, by 2:00 PM. We’ll pick you up at the airport and transport you to our hotel in Wall, SD. After a brief introductory meeting amd early dinner, we’ll head into the Badlands for a special photo session with a Native American family, followed by sunset at Burns Basin Overlook for views of the multi-colored buttes and gullies of the Badlands.
June 7, 2024: We’ll be out early to catch the sunrise and early morning light, starting at Door Trail, where we can hike out into the Badlands. From there, we drive the Loop Road to breakfast at Cedar Pass Lodge. Returning to Wall, we’ll have an afternoon image review. We’ll return to the Badlands for wildlife photography and sunset at White River Valley Overlook.
June 8, 2024: This morning’s sunrise location is Big Badlands Overlook. From there, we’ll head to Norbeck Pass for more photography of the fantastic eroded formations of the Badlands. We’ll have a good chance of spotting bighorn rams along the way. After an image review session and early dinner, we’ll hike out into the Badlands for golden hour light on eroded ash and mudstone mounds, gullies, and spires.
June 9, 2024: This morning, we’ll do a door-off helicopter tour of the Badlands, followed by an image review and instruction session. In the afternoon we will go to a working cattle ranch to photograph the ranch hands, a cattle drive, and the cowhands running their horses at our direction. Dinner will be a down home affair at the ranch, with music and cowboy poetry by members of the ranch family.
June 10, 2024: After our final sunrise photo session and breakfast, we’ll return to Rapid City Airport for afternoon departures.
Moderate: Walks of up to three miles on possibly uneven ground.
Arrive Rapid City Regional Airport (RAP), Rapid City, South Dakota before 2:00 PM on June 6, 2024. Flights out can be made after 2:00 PM on June 10, 2024. Air travel delays are common. Please arrive early, possibly even the day prior, so you don’t miss any of the workshop.
What to Bring
Please see our page How To Prepare For Your Workshop. We will send you a detailed information document 90 days before your workshop. This document will include specifics of where and when to meet, gear and clothing recommendations, and more.
- Double occupancy lodging. Single available for $750 supplement.
- All meals, soft drinks, and snacks during the workshop.
- All permits and park fees.
- All transportation during the workshop.
- Photographic guiding and instruction from 2 pros.
- Image reviews and post-processing instruction.
- Travel to and from Rapid City, South Dakota.
- Passport and visa fees (if applicable).
- Any meals or accommodations before or after the workshop dates.
- Items of a personal nature.
- Alcoholic beverages.
- Travel Medical and Trip Cancellation Insurance (optional, but recommended).
- Anything else specifically not listed as included.
- Single rooming available for $750 supplement.
“Greg is an excellent instructor in the field, helping with camera settings, pointing out various views and helping with compositions. ”
“Greg and David are an outstanding teacher and a superlative guide. Taking photos from the helicopters was the highlight of the workshop. Greg provided us with the camera setting we would need to get great photos. ”