If you're planning a trip to Badlands National Park in Western South Dakota, there are several things you'll need on your packing list, like comfortable shoes, sunscreen, and plenty of water.

But there is one thing you leave off your packing list.


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South Dakota National Park Goes Cashless

Effective at the beginning of this month (March 2023), the park joined a number of other National Park Service (NPS) facilities by going completely cashless for entrance and permit fees.

That means your only payment options are mobile or electronic.

Entrance passes must now be purchased in advance at Recreation.gov or through the Recreation.gov application. Visitors purchasing from Recreation.gov will have a digital pass they can store on a mobile device or print out.

According to the NPS website:

'Moving to a cashless system allows parks to be better stewards of visitor dollars by reducing the amount of time park staff spend managing cash, increasing the amount of fee revenue available to support critical projects and visitor services, and improving accountability and reducing risk.'

America the Beautiful annual and lifetime passes will still be honored with proper identification.

RANKED: Here are the most popular national parks

To determine the most popular national parks in the United States, Stacker compiled data from the National Park Service on the number of recreational visits each site had in 2020. Keep reading to discover the 50 most popular national parks in the United States, in reverse order from #50 to #1. And be sure to check with individuals parks before you visit to find out about ongoing, pandemic-related safety precautions at www.nps.gov/coronavirus.

LOOK: Stunning vintage photos capture the beauty of America's national parks

Today these parks are located throughout the country in 25 states and the U.S. Virgin Islands. The land encompassing them was either purchased or donated, though much of it had been inhabited by native people for thousands of years before the founding of the United States. These areas are protected and revered as educational resources about the natural world, and as spaces for exploration.

Keep scrolling for 50 vintage photos that show the beauty of America's national parks.

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