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  1. #1
    Hero!'s Avatar
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    Need Guidance For Southern Western Kansas

    I'm traveling northward via auto and entering Kansas on hwy 1 from Okla which will turn into hwy 183.

    The issue is I want to go to Colorado and I'm not sure which would be the most scenic route through Kansas: Dodge City-Garden City-Colorado OR Copeland-Ulysses-Colorado.

    Sure appreciate your guidance on this or any other routes you think might be superior.

    Thanks!!!

  2. #2
    Alex Hawley's Avatar
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    Hello Hero,

    I may be the only member here who has been in that area of the world for any lenght of time. In general, the scenery along US 50 and south is not very different from that in the Amarillo-Dahlhart, Texas region. The most scenic route through Western, KS lies between US 96 and I-70, much further north than what you have proposed.

    That being said, I vote for the southern route you have chosen. OK 1 and US 183 come in just east of Ashland. I would take 183 through the Cimarron River valley. Some rugged terrain in that area. Several years ago, Ted Turner bought up two of the large ranches in that area and is supposed to be establishing some Buffalo herds there. This is real Old West ranch country where horses are still the best way to get around. Then follow 160 west to Meade and on to Colorado. This was also the area that the Dalton Gang once roamed (and robbed) and where the cattle drives from Texas passed on their way to Dodge City.

    West of Meade, you're back to the flat High Plains. Climb a windmill or grain elevator and you can see all the way back to Texas.

    If you can, go to Wal-Mart and get a Delorme Atlas of Kansas. Those maps have all the terrain features marked plus all the backroads. Very handy to have.

    The US 50 route is pretty desolate. That highway follows the Arkansas river all the way to Canon City. Its not very photogenic in my opinion.
    Semper Fi & God Bless America
    My Photography Blog

  3. #3
    Hero!'s Avatar
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    Mucho Thanks for the good info, Alex!

    I'm off to Wally-World.

  4. #4

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    You may wish to go over to Rt 83 and photograph the Monument Rocks.

    There is also an interesting private museum close by too if you like fossils and other interesting things for sale:
    http://www.keystonegallery.com/pdf/K...hure-Print.pdf

    The fella has everything wired for 12 volts! Solar panels - wind generator - burning stove - really energy independent! Last time I was there I picked up two Moqui balls and shot Monument Rocks at sunset.

  5. #5

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    My recommendation for SW Kansas is: Just avoid it.

    Earl, ducking and running
    Honey, I promise no more searching eBay for cameras.

  6. #6
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    Or go up through the Texas panhandle and stop at Palo Duro Canyon.
    Robert M. Teague
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    "A man who works with his hands is a laborer; a man who works with his hands and his brain is a craftsman; a man who works with his hands and his brain and his heart is an artist" -- Louis Nizer

  7. #7

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    US Hwy 83 is my road of choice when traveling north-south through western Kansas. There is a lot of interesting stuff if you're willing to look for it.

  8. #8
    Alex Hawley's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 25asa
    You may wish to go over to Rt 83 and photograph the Monument Rocks.
    That was the area I alluded to between US 96 and I-70. Certainly worth the time and distance if you can spare it.
    Semper Fi & God Bless America
    My Photography Blog

  9. #9

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    Alex may have forgotten that I lived most of my life in Kansas and considering that I am a little older I imagine that I may be the person around here that has the most experience with the area.

    If you have the time, I would head north on 283 through Ness City and over to Wakeeney on I-70 then west to the Chalk Cliffs region along the Smoky Hill River. There is another canyon that lies along the east of the Chalk Cliffs named Wild Cat Canyon http://abyss.kgs.ku.edu/pls/abyss/pu..._id=681&f_hd=Y

    Many photo ops because this region has been relatively unphotographed. I have a two year body of work but it is still not widely circulated. I have some images from there in the portfolio labeled "Antiquity" on my site...link is at the bottom of this post.

    The other thing that you could do is to head out west on Highway 160 into eastern Colorado. you will run along the edge of the Comanche and Cimmaron grasslands and nearer to Trinidad Colorado you will encounter some dry water ways and scenic breaks in the prairie. This area is also scarcely photographed so far as I know. I had wanted to spend a lot of time there and photograph...just never got around to it.

    I don't know where in Colorado you want to go but going into Trinidad and over to Laveta and west of Walsenberg will put you on the route to the Great Sand Dunes National Monument near Alamosa, Colorado. A person could spend days in the Sand Dunes depending on light conditions there are always new images to be made there.

    Southern and Western Kansas, other then the areas that I mentioned and small towns along the way, is of little scenic interest. It is largely high plains prairie and cultivation.

    Good luck and enjoy your trip.
    Art is a step from what is obvious and well-known toward what is arcane and concealed.

    Visit my website at http://www.donaldmillerphotography.com

  10. #10

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    As an addendum to the Chalk Cliffs and Wild Cat Canyon recommendations, please be aware that this is prime rattlesnake country and this is a time of year where they will be active. I have spent many, many days in the formations and not had any nasty experiences...summer and winter...my recommendations are to be aware.
    Art is a step from what is obvious and well-known toward what is arcane and concealed.

    Visit my website at http://www.donaldmillerphotography.com

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