Harper Camperland Blog

  • Published on Sep 26, 2016
    The Perfect Fall Drive: Glacial Hills Scenic Byway

    Fall is officially here and I think we can all agree that we are excited for the summer heat to say goodbye for another year. The orange, red and yellow colors will soon start replacing the green and for a short time we are reminded how truly beautiful Kansas is in the fall. This year, take advantage of the cooler temps and changing colors and hit the road for a nice Kansas drive. There are many places to take in all of Fall’s beauty, but one spot particularly comes to mind: the Glacial Hills Scenic Byway

    The Glacial Hills Scenic Byway starts in Leavenworth, Kansas, at the intersection of K-7 and K-92. It extends 63 miles through the Glacial Hills of Kansas to White Cloud, Kansas. As you are driving, you can stop in a few communities on the way including Atchison, birthplace of Amelia Earhart, and Troy. 

    The “Glacial Hills” name originated because the glaciers that once covered the area receded north and left behind a very unique landscape that is filled with hills and valleys with streams running throughout, making it very fertile farmland as well. There are even pink boulders (yes, I said pink) that are made of Sioux quartzite from the mountains of Minnesota that the glaciers left. In the fall, these hills and valley are filled with a golden glow of yellow and orange hues, leaving you with a sense of Kansas pride as you gaze out into the landscapes.

     

    Not only does this drive showcase the beauty of the fall season, it also has historic significance. These towns were the first areas that pioneers settled as they were making their way along the Missouri River. It even marks where the Lewis and Clark Expedition camped on July 4, 1804, celebrating their first 4th of July west of the Missouri River. As you make your way through each community, make sure to take some time to drive around the town to take in the history and culture of each unique area, from the Victorian homes of Atchison to the historic barn tour of Troy. 

    As most adventures go, we are leaving the best for last! As you round out your drive in White Cloud, make sure to climb to the top of the overlook. From the platform you can see 4 states, Kansas, Iowa, Nebraska and Missouri (as long as it is a clear day). It is the perfect exclamation point on the end of a wonderful fall drive in Kansas!

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