What are the Konza Prairie Trails?
Located in the Flint Hills of northeastern Kansas, Konza Prairie Trails are part of Konza Prairie Biological Station, which is a native tallgrass prairie preserve and managed as a field research station by the K-State Division of Biology. Since Konza Prairie is a biological research station, most of the area is off-limits to the general public. However, the Nature Trails are open to the public and available from dawn to dusk every day of the year.
There are three trails you can choose from, each one will take you through gallery forests, over Kings Creek, through tallgrass prairie, and over limestone ledges. At the highest point you will get an amazing view of the Flint Hills and the Kansas River Valley.
- Nature Trail Loop
Allow minimum of 2-hours for this 2.5-mile round trip hike.
- Kings Creek Loop
Allow minimum of 3½-hours for this 4.4-mile round trip hike.
- Goodwin Hill Loop
Allow minimum of 4½-hours for this 6.0-mile round trip hike.
- Just off the Nature Trail Loop is Hokanson Homestead, settled by Swedish immigrants in 1878. Situated near Kings Creek, the homestead includes an original limestone barn, as well as a wildlife observation lean-to and outdoor seating area. Remember to allow about an extra hour to enjoy investigation of this site.
The Konza Prairie is a 10-15 minute drive south of Manhattan, KS. When you click here you will find the address and directions to the Konza Prairie Trails. While you are checking that out, look around their website for details to help you be better prepared for your trip to visit the trails, such as: there is a suggested donation of $2. They even have a place to check “Konza Weather!”
I thoroughly enjoyed my trip to the Konza Prairie Trails last fall and I can’t wait to check it out now that everything is growing and so colorful, especially before it gets to hot! How about you? Is there a place you love to hike, or are itching to try out? In the meantime, here are some library books to hold you over.