|Distance||0.1 miles roundtrip|
- Cool Niorbrara Chalk spire
- Pretty surrounding badlands and prairie
Voted one of the 8 Wonders of Kansas along with nearby Monument Rocks, Castle Rock is a unique spire of Niobrara chalk rising above the prairie "like a castle", as shown in the first picture below. A long time ago, Kansas was underneath the sea, and over millions of years, bones and shells compacted to create a layer of Niobrara chalk. After the sea disappeared, the elements sculpted the formation and nearby badlands (in the second picture below) from the chalk layer, making the scene you see today. Erosion continues to happen -- in 2001 in the aftermath of a thunderstorm, the tallest spire crumbled. Visitors climbing Castle Rock and carving their names increase the rate of erosion, and it's only a matter of time until more of the formation disappears.
Castle Rock is on privately owned land, so please be respectful to ensure everyone will still be able to enjoy this place in the future! Pick up after yourself and your dog and do not touch the fragile rock formation. You can visit any time of the year, but the road here is impassible when wet and muddy. This is one of the few attractions in this part of Kansas, so expect to see people on the weekends, though they won't linger long.
From the West
From Interstate 70, take take the exit for Kansas Highway 212 (Quinter exit), then turn right to head south. Turn left onto Gove County K, then turn left onto Gove County 80. You'll cross a cattle guard, and the road will be very rough and rutted (passable in a sedan if you're careful). In wet weather, this road is impassible.
From the East
From Interstate 70, take the exit for Kansas Highway 198 (Collyer exit), then turn right onto 130th Avenue. Turn right onto U Road, then turn right onto Gove County 80. You'll cross a cattle guard, and the road will be very rough and rutted. In wet weather, this road is impassible (passable in a sedan if you're careful).
Google Maps Directions
Parking, Fees, and Facilities
Parking is free! There are no facilities here.