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Thursday, July 6, 2017

Monument Rocks in western Kansas

Slash a wide path down the middle of our country from north to south, and you will likely discover that eons ago it was part of a shallow sea. Back before dinosaurs roamed the land, sea creatures swam the sea.

For years, geologists, archeologists and other scientists have found fossils proving that sea life once existed in what is now prairie land. Today Monument Rocks, a formation of chalk rocks, is all that remains of the millions of years of sediment deposited on the sea floor. Erosion washed away all but these rocks. Today they rise out of the flat Kansas landscape and stand as tall sentinels to a distant past.

As a National Landmark, they attract many visitors. Although they stand on private property, they are open to the public. Standing tall at heights of 100+ feet, they appear both majestic and vulnerable. I stood in awe, trying unsuccessfully to imagine what our country once looked like. How many years did it take for large deposits of fossils and how many after that for sediment to build to such towering heights?

Although they don't cover large areas of land, they are magnificent. You can see the vulnerability in the crumbling bits of rock that litter the ground. Climbing on them is forbidden, and it's easy to understand why. However, visitors are free to roam around and take pictures of the different views. When you visit, be sure to walk through and around the formations, because you'll be amazed at how a few steps can totally change your perspective.

Located south of Oakley, Kansas and I-70, it is about a twenty-mile drive and well worth the time.


  1. Cool looking place that I had never heard of. Nice!

  2. I am really glad we stopped. Had no idea this was in Kansas.