Love the Lord your God, listen to His voice and hold fast to Him, for the Lord is your life! Deut. 30:20

Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Kansas Adventures, May; Part 2

Leaving Manhattan, we continued north on 77 toward Blue Rapids.
Waterfall #4, Alcove Springs and waterfall

We were on the Oregon Trail and going to a spot that the pioneers used to stop at. They would rest up before crossing the Big Blue to continue their journey west.

The Big Blue River

After you drive through the town of Blue Rapids, continue north on 77, you will see a big gypsum plant on the left and just before the plant, turn off on a gravel road that takes you to Alcove Spring Park (a few miles).

There is a guest book to sign in and it was interesting to find so many had visited this out of the way destination; people from all over the US and overseas (we saw one from Australia) just in the past few days.

We walked on a well kept path to these springs (about 3 minutes). Fresh water bubbling out of the ground.

" The Lord will guide you always;
He will satisfy your needs in a sun-scorched land
and will strengthen your frame. You will be like a well-watered garden,
like a spring whose waters never fail."
Isaiah 58:11

A pioneer had etched his name and date onto the rock.

The falls were bone dry. There was a picture with the water gushing over and pioneers taking a "shower" underneath it. Well, not today. But still so interesting to know the history that had taken place here!

Here was where the pioneers "parked" their wagons.

Hard to see perhaps in the pictures, but we could see the swells in the ground made by the many wagon trains that passed here.

Such interesting history.

On the way out, Al spotted a deer. When he saw our car, he plopped himself down in the wheat field. See his ears poking out?

We waited and finally, he got tired of waiting for us to leave and he got up and ran off.
The Weaver Hotel in Waterville, Ks is a landmark of the old railroad days. It is in use today and would have been a fun overnight stop! But we didn't know about it, just saw it from the road as we were driving by.

Waterfall #5, Geary Lake Falls at Geary State Fishing Lake

Staying on Highway 77, just south of Junction City 6 miles, we came to State Lake Road. Not marked real well. We went on that road for about 2000 feet to a sign that is easy to miss (we did and went further and had to backtrack). We parked by the dam.

We walked across the dam and took the path off to the right.

Getting to the bottom of the falls was a steep climb. There were 2 ways down, a steep but well marked trail, or climb the rocks down. We took the path down and climbed up the rocks.

We were disappointed that there was quite a bit of trash. If anyone reading this goes, take along a garbage sack and help pick up the litter there. Besides that, it was really a beautiful falls!

Last - and I should say, the least,(truthfully!)

Waterfalls #6,Brown park Waterfall, Abilene
We drove south ofAbilene a couple of miles, over the Smoky River bridge to the Brown Memorial Park. We drove around this beautiful park and had to ask where there were some falls.

can you even call these falls?? Perhaps a 4 inch drop?
These used to be more impressive and there was a waterwheel in use at one time. The river has been diverted somewhat and there is more of a falls but it is on private property now we were told. These weren't worth going to but we didn't know that until we got there.

The property these falls are on is very nice though! A mansion that is now a retirement home is in this park area. This land was originally donated by Cleyson L. Brown, who founded the company which evolved into the Sprint Corporation.

We had hoped to eat here at the end of the day, but we arrived at 8:00 and they quit serving at 7;30. So sad. We will have to go back!

What a wonderful day, driving to see Kansas waterfalls! Who would have known Kansas to have such wondrous falls!

Monday, May 30, 2011

Adventures in Kansas; May, Part 1

At church yesterday, a couple people were asking how I was spending the weekend. When I mentioned that we had done our May Kansas adventures the day before and had gone to some Kansas waterfalls, there was this puzzled look on their faces.

Waterfalls? Kansas?

When one thinks of waterfalls, we may think of ones like these in Iceland.

And I love these Manai Falls in the gorge in the prefecture I grew up at in Japan.

Planning our monthly "go somewhere new in Kansas" trips, I came across an article that took you on a tour of several waterfalls in Kansas. We thought that would be fun! At first we were going to do it in April, but due to the drought, we figured that might not be good. Well, we have had a few good rains, so we decided to do it this month.
Waterfall #1, Chase Lake Falls, Cottonwood Falls

The first waterfall was located at Chase State Fishing Lake outside of Cottonwood Falls.

We drove the length of the lake first and took a hike up a hill first. Look at this beautiful wild flower!

To get to the waterfalls, you park by the dam and walk across it.

At the end of the dam, follow the trail to the left and it begins to descend. You can hear the sounds of the falls.
and then you see this

We continued down the path. The ground was a little wet and somewhat slippery.

These falls have a vertical drop of about 40 feet.

There were stepping stones that you could step out into the middle of the stream.
We were quite impressed.

Waterfalls #2, Lake Kahola Waterfalls, Dunlap, KS -

We drove north out of Cottonwood Falls on 177 about half-way to Council Grove. Take FF Avenue, a gravel road east.

(It actually might be a better road coming north off Highway 50, but we like these off roads!)

We drove quite a distance and there were a couple of times we weren't sure we were still on the right road.

In the middle of Flint Hill country. Just beautiful!!

So, what a surprise to find this lake in the middle of ranch country.

With very nice beach homes

with boat garages.

Kahola Falls is just north of the dam and east of the bridge and lake. There is a parking lot of sorts by the dam. We asked a local how to get to the falls. He mentioned that really it is for the owners of the lake homes only, but said he said he didn't think it would be a problem for us to take a look-see. And his son took us down the path to see it.

A little tricky getting down to the falls. Climbing over boulders.

The travel books did not say this was a private waterfall and mentioned that geology students come to see the rock formations and layers of limestone in the falls.

On to our next destination. We headed out of Lake Kahola (doesn't that sound Hawaiian?) toward Council Grove and further north on 177 toward Manhattan.

Waterfall #3, Deep Creek Waterfall, Manhattan, KS
Perhaps for those who are K-Staters, they know all about this place. We were surprised by it.
To get to it, you go north on 177 almost into Manhattan and turn right onto Deep Creek Road. Go 4 miles to Pillsbury Crossing Road (gravel) and follow to the falls.

You can drive right out onto the river bed close to the falls!

We found a cozy spot to have a picnic lunch. (that picnic basket belonged to my Grandpa and Granma Geiger)

It was so relaxing and refreshing eating by the waterfalls.

The rest of the waterfall adventure to be continued another day!