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

Horseback riding trails



The ND Parks and Recreation Department reminds all visitors who are bringing horses into ND State Parks of the importance of vaccinating the horses for the virus that causes EHM (Equine Herpesvirus Myloencephalophy). There have been confirmed cases of the EHM virus in ND horses as well as in adjoining states this year.

In order to protect your horses and other horses which use our equestrian facilities, we request all users be up to date with shots including vaccinating for EHM.

Due to the presence of EHM in ND in 2018, Park Rangers may do random surveys on in-state horses in ND State Parks in 2018 for vaccination records. In state horses are not required to be vaccinated for EHM however, to ensure all steps are taken to prevent the spread of EHM, ND Parks and Recreation will be taking precautionary measures to increase awareness of EHM.

All horses coming into ND including ND State Parks from adjoining states are required to show proof of Certificate of Veterinary Inspection. These documents will be made available for park rangers to inspect upon arrival at any ND State Park.

Horse trails and corrals for those bringing in their own mounts can be found in four of North Dakota's State Parks:

Horseback Riding Little Missouri State Park

Certified weed-free forage use required

All livestock feed used in state parks must be certified as noxious weed-seed-free. The department is one of several public agencies with this requirement in order to reduce the spread of noxious weeds on public land. It is recommended that livestock be fed weed-free forage for at least three days prior to being brought on public land.

Contact the park you wish to visit to see if it has weed-free forage available for sale. For a list of weed-free certified suppliers, visit the North Dakota Department of Agriculture's web site, www.agdepartment.com.

Policies for horseback riding areas

  • In addition to vehicle entrance and camping fees, those bringing horses into North Dakota State Parks are charged daily horse fee which allow use of corrals and trails.
  • Call parks directly to make a reservation to use horse camping areas.
  • Ride only on trails designated for horse use. Ask park staff for a trail map and information about park areas that may be closed to horseback riding, or for specific park policies on horse use.
  • Campfires are allowed only in designated firerings.
  • Use of certified weed-seed free forage or feed is required.
  • Please clean up hay and manure daily and before you leave, both in the park corrals and all use areas.
  • Tie horses to corral posts or horse trailers, not to trees. The use of hobbles is prohibited.
  • Do not ride in park campgrounds, playgrounds or picnicking areas.
  • Many of the trails are located on privately-owned land. Please respect the rights of landowners and keep your horses on the designated trail right-of-way.
  • Leave all gates as you found them.
  • Check with park ranger for additional park policies.

Bringing horses into North Dakota

Information on health certificates and tests can be found on the North Dakota Department of Agriculture's web site, www.agdepartment.com, under Animal Import Permits.

Trail use in State Forests, Recreation Areas and Natural Areas

North Dakota's State Forests, Recreation Areas and Natural Areas also offer many opportunities for trail users. Click here for more information and to view trail maps.