Places to Visit—Tallgrass Prairie

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color photo of two people standing in knee-high, green prairie grass with yellow flowers blooming
small drawing of Kansas map with Chase County highlighted in red

Chase County, Kansas

One of the best places to see the Kansas Flint Hills is the Tallgrass Prairie National Preserve (TPNP) in Chase County, Kansas. A spectacular green in the spring, the Flint Hills can be colorful in the autumn, as grasses turn rusty red and brown. Also found on the hills of the TPNP is a somewhat surprising fall bloomer called beggar-ticks. These showy yellow flowers generally flourish in a moist environment, and they're on the hillside shown here because of the interbedded limestone and shales that characterize the geology of the Flint Hills. Water moves through the limestone until it encounters the impermeable shale, then seeps out onto the hillside and supports wetland plants, such as beggar-ticks and cardinal flower. The TPNP consists of 10,894 acres, mostly native tallgrass pasture, managed jointly by the National Park Service, The Nature Conservancy, and the Kansas Park Trust. The TPNP is just off U.S. Highway 177, about 1 mile west and 2 miles north of Strong City or 17 miles south of Council Grove (from The Geologic Record, vol. 8.3).

Other places to visit in the Kansas Flint Hills.

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