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Newest Area State Park Opens

KSAL Staff - August 31, 2014 8:55 am

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Visitors can now reserve a campsite at the newest statepark area in Kansas.

According to the Kansasa Department of Wildlife, Parks, and Tourism, Sand Hills State Park is located just north of Hutchinson, two miles east of the K-61/56th Street intersection.

The park is a 1,123-acre natural area of sand dunes, grasslands, wetlands, and woodlands. It features 64 utility camping sites, 44 of which have water, sewer, and electricity, and 20 with only water and sewer. All sites have 50-amp service. Twenty sites have concrete pads and camping areas to assist campers with disabilities, and 14 of the sites have horse pens. Long-term camping is available, and modern cabins are planned for the future. A camp host is on the site, and a new park office is expected to open soon.

Campers can view more information, check on campsite availability and make reservations for Sand Hills State Park by visiting www.ksoutdoors.com/State-Parks/Locations/Sand-Hills or by visiting www.reserveamerica.com and searching for Sand Hills State Park, KS.

Popular activities at the park are hiking and horseback riding. Other activities include hunting (through the Special Hunts Program), bird watching, wildflower walks, jogging and simple relaxation in the country. There is a 15-mile system of eight interpretive, hiking and horseback riding trails that weave among the 10- to 40-foot high sand dunes, through grasslands and trees, and around ponds.

For 40 years, Sand Hills State Park has been a favorite outdoor destination, but the Kansas Department of Wildlife, Parks and Tourism was able only recently to develop camping areas at the park. The former Kansas Park and Resources Authority acquired 640 acres of land from the Kansas State Industrial Reformatory in 1974, establishing the original park area. Shortly afterward, the Dillon family of Hutchinson donated an adjacent 320 acres. With the donation, the state was able to acquire another adjacent 163 acres, creating the present-day park.

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