BADLANDS NATIONAL PARK, SOUTH DAKOTA
Badlands was once the territory of Smilodon, which is a saber-toothed cat that lived in the area around 10,000 years ago and not, as we were originally led to believe, a brand of toothpaste. Actually the cat’s full name is Smilodon fatalis, which presumably means if you ever got close enough to see this thing grinning, you’d pretty much had it. Badlands in general refers to an area of land heavily eroded that is difficult to do much with and difficult to travel through. Unless you happen to be a paleontologist, in which case you probably can’t wait to get there. Heavy erosion likely means lots of fossils, and the Badlands of South Dakota are one of the world’s richest sources of fossils.