Copyright 2009-2011 Lisa Waterman Gray

Monday, January 16, 2012

Kansas's Stunning Red Hills

(with apologies for technical difficulties that precluded the addition of images to this post - please visit http://www.kansastravel.org/gypsumhills.htm)

On January 10, the Kansas City Star described a new conservation effort designed to preserve Kansas's 'Red Hills,' a spot in the lower half of the state that looks like it was plucked from the nation's southwestern region.

Gypsum is a major mineral in these hills, which were formed about 260 million years ago - the last vestiges of an inland sea that stretched from north to south across a broad swath of the continent. Wide open spaces are perfect for harnessing power from gusty winds that sweep the area. The Nature Conservancy has created this new protective initiative, for a region where the lesser prairie chicken and other indigenous wildlife thrive, and unsullied waterways and bat caves abound.

What I remember most about my view of these gorgeous hills is driving open mouthed, for more than 15 miles, as I approached the town of Medicine Lodge and then grudgingly watching them fade in my rear view mirror. This had to be one of my favorite areas of landscape throughout the state.

1 comment:

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