Trails on the West Side are Closed Today
All trails on the west side are closed today due to prescribed fire. For your safety, please obey signs and do not venture beyond closed areas. The historic ranch buildings remain open and all areas to the east of Hwy 177 are open to hiking More »
Reminder, Bison Are Wild Animals
Windmill Pasture is home to the bison herd. They have been quite active in recent weeks. Please stay on the trails and use caution in their vicinity. Do not come in close contact with the bison. Allow at least 100 yards between you and the herd. More »
Environmental Factors at the Preserve
The present prairie ecosystem is influenced and impacted by several different environmental factors. Airborne pollution rides in on the prairie wind from metropolis and industrial areas. The water quality of the many lakes, streams and tributaries can be compromised by runoff from pesticides used in agriculture.
For thousands of years, climate and drainage patterns of the Flint Hills geology nurtured the prairie grasses and forbs. Consequentially, these forces created features that were integral in supporting animal and human life. Drawn to the land by its rich natural resources, humans used the bounty they found here to further shape the land.
Did You Know?
There is archaelogocal evidence of humans living here over 10,000 years ago. Tribes affiliated with the preserve are the Kaw, Osage, Wichita, and Pawnee.