White Butte Trip Report

White Butte was #1 of the 4 state highpoints completed during our 2015 North Central Trip and was the northern most highpoint of that trip. It was #30 out of the 50 states for me.

Highpoint Statistics:
Summit Date:Monday August 17th, 2015
State: North Dakota
Elevation: 3,507′
Distance: 1.5 Miles

Highpoint Links:
Photo Gallery
Trip Report

This highpoint has a couple of interesting characteristics. One is that it is privately owned and is surrounded by private farm land. The other is the heavy population of rattle snakes. Given the snakes, I opted not to bring my Sheltie Samson. Dogs have a knack for finding snakes, and Susan would have been very cross with me if I killed our dog.

Trailhead Trouble
My goal was to be at the summit at the 6:00 AM sunrise, so allowing an hour for the drive and another hour to make the short climb, I set out at 4:00 AM from the Butte View RV park. I had a bit of trouble locating the trailhead, as Google took me through an active hay field. It didn’t take me long to figure out this wasn’t right.

White Butte North Dakota Lost

After a bit of back tracking, I found the access road, which is a tractor road that is not in the best of shape. Driving it,  made me glad for the Jeep. On the way out, I noticed a sign that said “Road Close” (not a typo) in faint letters, but no road is ever closed to a jeep.

Sunrise Summit
I made the summit in plenty of time, and enjoyed a Cuban cigar while I watched the sunrise and listened to what sounded like a large number of coyotes singing their song in the valley. There was a rainstorm in the distance which made for a dramatic sunrise with a lot of interesting cloud formations.

White Butte North Dakota Danger Cigar 1

This summit was a much more enjoyable experience than I expected, and the view was quite good for such a low elevation. The Butte was surrounded by farmland, making for some classic american scenery.

White Butte North Dakota HP Badge Side


So after a nice smoke and sunrise, I made my way back down to the waiting jeep and headed back to the RV park where I found my wife and dog still sleeping.

White Butte North Dakota Jeep