Page Type Page Type: Trip Report
Location Lat/Lon: 39.02190°N / 102.03700°E
Date Date Climbed/Hiked: Nov 25, 2007
Activities Activities: Hiking
Seasons Season: Fall


November 25, 2007

Objective: Mt Sunflower (4,039’) – KS Rank 1
Route: Kansas Rd 3 off I-70
Total Distance: ~.25 miles
Elevation Gain: ~50 ft
Participants: Jim & Karen Ohl

All Pictures

Karen and I spent a relaxing Thanksgiving holiday in Topeka visiting family and left for home on Sunday morning. Not being entirely thrilled about the 8.5-hr drive back across the plains to Colorado Springs, we decided to spice things up by stopping to see the World's Largest Prairie Dog...a lifelong dream of Karen's. Unfortunately, the exhibit is closed on Sunday's so it was on to Plan B.

After a 2+ month hiatus from summiting anything other than a ladder or 2 flights of stairs, we were starting to feel the itch. As luck would have it, Mt Sunflower, the Kansas state highpoint, was just a short detour from our route home. Why not. At least it would more exciting than bagging two ranked 4ers in Bent County, CO.

Getting There

Mt SunflowerThe trailhead for Mt Sunflower

Our Kansas state roadmap showed some sort of county road stemming off of I-70 at Kanorado (1 mile east of the Kansas/Colorado border), heading south and passing somewhat near a small map symbol indicating the highpoint. The road wasn't even labeled on the map, but who needs to know that anyway? About a mile after leaving the interstate the pavement ended and we headed down the straightest dirt road on planet earth. Not seeing any signs indicating we were headed toward Mt Sunflower, we stopped at a house along the way to ask for directions. 21.9 miles, a sharp left, followed by a sharp right later (the only turns in that road) we reached the turnoff for Mt Sunflower. The true summit wasn't exactly distinct even at this point...not surprisingly, but we persevered. A half mile further we came to the trailhead.

The "Climb"

Since highpointing is fairly lax on rules, we turned right at the trailhead and drove the rocky road on up to the true summit and I practiced my "drive-n-drag" technique as we topped out at 3:40pm. The views from the summit were actually pretty unique for anyone not used to unobstructed views for dozens of miles in every was a bluebird day indeed!

Mt SunflowerBreathtaking views of the peaks to our west from the summit

I figured the hills a bit further to the west were actually a bit higher than us, but then again, those hills were in Colorado. We spent about 15 minutes on the summit taking in the views and signing the summit register before it was time to go. Thanks to the Hayden family for allowing free access onto their property for everyone to test their mustard on the slopes of mighty Mt Sunflower!
Mt SunflowerState Highpoint #3, mighty Mt Sunflower, Kansas!


Post a Comment
Viewing: 1-6 of 6

shknbke - Nov 27, 2007 10:04 am - Voted 10/10

from a low to a high

Very creative TR, Jim! I love the foot drag pic. You gotta admit even the dumb state highpoints can be fun, right? Each one has it's own unique character. You'll visit places you never would go to!

You guys had to find some way to console yourselves after your smurf boys lost the ultimate bragging rights game to my Mizzou Tigers, right? What better way to do that than to hit the highpoint! I look forward to reading many more state hp TR's from you in the future.

vancouver islander

vancouver islander - Nov 27, 2007 2:32 pm - Voted 10/10


Where would you say the crux was?


HokieJim - Nov 27, 2007 2:48 pm - Hasn't voted

Re: Fabulous

There was a cattle grate about 1/4 mile from the summit...could be an ankle turner if you are not careful :)

Augie Medina

Augie Medina - Nov 28, 2007 10:17 am - Voted 10/10

Entertaining Read

We can never bury our humor too deep can we.


Danf - Jul 17, 2013 9:09 am - Hasn't voted

funny - gps though..

check your lat long, looks like E should be W!


crussellbowden - Jan 12, 2016 2:22 am - Voted 8/10

I'll be honest

the TR was good but the name for it was fantastic!

Viewing: 1-6 of 6



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