Land and Sky Scenic Byway

(Frank) We’re back. I’m going to sit up straight in my chair and behave. (Deb) I’ll try. I’ll try. All right, we had the dedication of the latest, the Land and Sky Scenic Byway, out in far northwestern Kansas. It was an awesome time. I got to help with tours at Fort Wallace the day before October 5th. All the big wigs are coming out. That night, we had stargazing on Mount Sunflower with our friend, Brenda Culbertson. Remember Brenda, from up near Holton. She is at the observatory up there. She came out to Mount Sunflower and helped educate people about the all of the stars. I’m telling you, Frank, living out there, we don’t live in town. We live up in the country. The sky is so big. It scared me the first couple of nights honestly. I’d walk outside, and I’m, “Whoa,” it was like being in outer space because- (Frank) Now, when you see the Milky Way, and everything out there- (Deb) You see the Milky Way and you just – stars on the horizon in either direction. It’s something. But the Land and Sky Byway obviously celebrates the land and the sky because, it would include the Arikaree Breaks, and all that great different landscapes you get on the high plains. It’s beautiful, and visit the Travel Kansas website to find all the scenic byways that have been designated. I think this one is number 12. They’re just great little scenic drives and wonderful little communities, and it’s just a great way to just bite off a little chunk of Kansas at a time, and enjoy it just a little piece at a time. The latest of the dozen designated scenic Kansas byways to be dedicated is in the far northwestern corner. The Land and Sky Scenic Byway follows 88 amazing miles along Kansas Highway 27 from Sharon Springs north to the Kansas-Nebraska state line. Travelers along the Land and Sky Scenic Byway have the opportunity to experience the Wallace Branch of the Great Western Cattle Trail, scale the highest point in Kansas at Mount Sunflower, and explore the deep canyons and rugged landscape of the Arikaree Breaks. Crossing Wallace, Sherman, and Cheyenne Counties, this byway includes the towns of Sharon Springs, Goodland, and St. Francis. The byway is also the only one in the state that focuses on agriculture and features thousands of acres of rotating crops, livestock and wildlife along the route. The Kansas Byways Program was formed to identify and designate scenic roadways for the enjoyment of the traveling public in Kansas. It is related to the National Scenic Byways Program, a project of the 1991 Intermodal Surface Transportation Efficiency Act (ISTEA). The National Scenic Byways Program seeks to identify and designate national scenic byways to increase tourism and educate the traveling public about our nation’s environment, history and culture. These roadways serve as natural, social, cultural and economic resources for the visitors to the state of Kansas, the people of Kansas and the local communities in which the roadways are located. The program is a cooperative effort among private citizens, local groups, local governments and state government agencies.

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