Looking to explore the great outdoors of Kansas with your pup? Why not head to the first state park in the Sunflower State? Nestled in the rolling hills, woods, and bluffs of the beautiful Smoky Hills region, the 15,000-acre Kanopolis State Park offers puptacular vistas and fun recreational activities that you and Fido will surely enjoy.
Discover the site's rugged beauty by hitting the more than 30 miles of trails, 15 of which are located in the Smoky Hill Wildlife Area. Should you decide to venture into this area, keep in mind that hunting is allowed here, and that some of the trails can take more than a day to complete on foot, but there is no camping available. For a hike that won't take too long, hit the 1.5-mile Buffalo Track Canyon Nature Trail, where you and your furry pal can check out the canyons, native plants, and wildlife. Another option is the 1.63-mile Split Boulder Trail, which will lead you and Fido to some interesting rock formations. Note that some of the park's trails are open to mountain bikers and horseback riders as well, so be prepared to share them with different types of users. Observe good trail petiquette by keeping your pooch on a 10-foot leash at all times and removing any pet waste immediately with your own clean-up bags. Bring enough water to share too!
If your pup is patient and quiet enough, don't miss the Wildlife Viewing Area, where you can spot a variety of birds, reptiles, and mammals, including the mule deer, bobcat, white-tailed deer, woodchuck, indigo bunting, mourning dove, and dark-eyed junco. The 40-acre Wildlife Viewing Area contains a .6-mile trail that meanders through a marsh and around a couple of ponds, as well as some photo blinds and an observation deck. Don't forget to bring your camera and binoculars!
Dog-friendly campsites are also available at the state park, allowing you and Fido to extend your adventure. Expect to have a pawrific time with your doggo at Kanopolis State Park!