ARKANSAS CITY, KANSAS
"Archaeology in Ark City"
In the summer of 1994, I participated in an archeological field school/excavation in this small, southern Kansas town. Most of the photos on this page will be from that dig.
I have nice memories of the town - the people were very friendly; having always lived near big cities, I really enjoyed the small-town mentality and ambience.
Although the work we were doing (salvage archaeology before the Kansas Highway Department extended a road) was very hot and dusty, it was always nice to retire to our campsite each afternoon. Our tents were pitched at a very nice park just south of the Arkansas River.
There are a number of nice restaurants in town - good home-style cooking. Sites nearby include the Cherokee Strip Museum (where the land rush into Indian Country began in the nineteenth century) and the Chaplin Nature Center. Unfortunately, I didn't have a lot of time for sightseeing while there (did get to the Cherokee Strip Museum, however). One night, a tornado touched down nearby - we were given an opportunity to take refuge in a couple of town businesses, but I stayed in my tent - I really thought it was going to fly away!!
Chaplin Nature Center
"Back to nature."
Wading in the Arkansas River was fun.
If you don't want to hike down the long way they built a set of stairs in the woods on the side of the hill.
Nature trails wind through the forest. We heard and saw many birds as we walked along the trail.
Flowers on one of the trees. I think it was a catalpa.
The adult birds would fly if I tried to take their photo. These are baby robins that could not fly away yet.
Sandbars like this were a hazzard when steamboats once went up and down the Arkansas River. Now they are a fun place to spend some time. We were the only ones there and had this great place all to our selves. Our own private beach.
Butterflies were in the damp sand near the water. They flew up all around me as I approached. This one decided it liked me.
This butterfly prefers the orange flowers of the orange milkweed growing near the parking area at Chaplin Nature Center.
At the sandbar we found tracks of raccoons, deer, skunks, and other animals in the damp sand at the river's edge. We never saw any of the animals but with so many tracks I knew they were around.
Drift wood snag at one end of the sandbar reminded me of a modern art exhibit I once saw.