Places to Visit—Chautauqua Hills

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color photo of sandstone cropping out from hillside in spring
small drawing of Kansas map with Chautauqua County highlighted in red

Chautauqua County, Kansas

Jutting up from the southern border of Kansas is a rugged region known as the Chautauqua Hills. In a band approximately 10 miles wide, these sandstone-capped hills extend as far north as Yates Center in Woodson County. The sandstones in the Chautauqua Hills are the Tonganoxie Sandstone Member of the Stranger Formation and Ireland Sandstone Member of the Lawrence Formation. Locally known as the Chautauqua sandstone, both are thick units, the remains of deposits that filled a large river valley during the Pennsylvanian Period, about 300 million years ago. A good place to see typical Chautauqua Hills sandstones is at The Hollow, a city park in Sedan located a block east of downtown. At the park's entrance is a display of limestone from Chautauqua County containing numerous fossils of rugose coral, which lived at the bottom of shallow seas during the Pennsylvanian Period (from The Geologic Record, vol. 7.2).

Other places to visit in the Kansas Chautauqua Hills.

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