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Camping Magpie Campground in West North Dakota

Camping Magpie Campground in West North Dakota

Camp North Dakota: I’m talking with Greg today. He’s going to tell us about the Magpie Campground in Little Missouri National Grasslands in North Dakota. Greg, why don’t we get started by having you give us a little bit of history and background on that area?

Camping Magpie Campground in West North Dakota
Magpie Campground in West North Dakota

Greg: Well, the grasslands is intermingled land between private and state. It’s one of the main public areas for the State of North Dakota, and there are a lot of activities if you want to hunt, camp, bike, horseback riding, and Magpie is kind of centered in all of it.

Camp North Dakota: Okay. And what types of camping do you have specifically at that Magpie Campground?

Greg: Magpie. You can tent or use a camper. There are back-in sites and pull-through sites. There are sites for horseback. There are hitching posts.

Camp North Dakota: Okay.

Greg: A little bit of everything.

Camp North Dakota: Great. And what are the most popular attractions for the campers that stay at Magpie?

Greg: In the fall, it would definitely be hunting. September is pretty busy with archery hunting. And then, through most of the summer, it would be Maah Daah Hey Trail. It’s one of the trailheads that’s kind of the center of the trail. And within a few miles in either direction, there’s the ice caves to the north and then to the south there’s Devil’s Pass and the Little Missouri River.

Camp North Dakota: The ice caves and Devil’s Pass is starting to sound like a Lord of the Rings map.

Greg: Yeah.

Camp North Dakota: Tell me about the ice caves.

Greg: The ice caves are just small caverns. they’re small caverns that throughout the summer you can be there in July on a 90-degree day and there’s still ice in them.

Camp North Dakota: Awesome. So, it’s probably pretty refreshing. Are they open all the time or are they manned by anybody? You can just kind of walk in them and poke around.

Greg:Yeah, they’re just open. There’s not a map or anything. There’s no signs, so you just kind of – once you get to the area, you’ve got to look around and find them on your own.

Camp North Dakota: Fun. How far in do they go?

Greg: Not too far. I’d say the deepest one would probably be 20 feet or so.

Camp North Dakota: Okay.

Greg: And some of them go more straight down and some of them are just kind of around the corners and stuff.

Camp North Dakota: Neat. And then what about Devil’s Pass?

Camping Magpie Campground in West North Dakota
Be on the look out for ice caves, Devil’s Pass, and the Maah Daah Hey Trail

Greg: Devil’s Pass actually used to be a road at one time, and then that’s been abandoned, but there’s still the trail. Maah Daah Hey Trail runs across it, and it’s a pass through one of the rougher sections of the grasslands.

Camp North Dakota: Okay, two more questions for you, Greg. If you were just going to spend one hour hanging out at Magpie Campground and that surrounding area there, being that you know the area well, how would you spend you time there?

Greg: I guess you’d go to some of the nearby overlooks. I would prefer to spend more than an hour, and actually the ice caves would be my first destination.

Camp North Dakota: Fun. Yeah, I like that you kind of have to find them yourself and get out there and search around. That’s pretty cool. Last question: if you could spend just one night at Magpie Campground in Little Missouri National Grasslands, which specific campsite would you stay at and why?

Greg: There are some of them in the back corner that I really like just because they’re nice, shaded, and kind of secluded a little bit more. But at that campground, I don’t think there’s a bad site.

Camp North Dakota: Sure.

Greg: It just depends on your needs.

Camp North Dakota: Okay, perfect. Well, thanks for that tip, and thank you, Greg, for taking a little time out of your morning to tell us a little bit more about Magpie Campground in Little Missouri National Grasslands.

Greg: Yeah, thank you.

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