Mushroom Rock State Park

park sign, Mushroom Rock State Park Driving north from Comanche County we stopped at one of my favorite places in Kansas: Mushroom Rock State Park in Ellsworth County, It is west of Brookville, two miles south of Highway 140. These rocks are part of the Dakota Sandstone Formation of the Smokey Hill region in central Kansas.

huge rock on rock pedestal

view of mushroom rocksrock looks like giant toadstoollarge contretionrock and timberlarge boulderstable-like rock formation
rock parkconcretionmore rocksrock surfaceflat boulder with picnic table on top
rock stratadark rocksMax stands beside giant mushroomfools' names picnic spot

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Photo caption--A fine specimen
My Grandfather Miller graduated from what is now Kansas Wesleyn University in Salina in 1914. While in college he visited the Mushroom Rocks with his KWU geology class. These photos are from his album. I had seen the photos long before I stumbled upon this wonderful place. People are no longer allowed to climb around on the large mushroom rock formation.
Photo caption--The Geology Class
Photo caption--Modern Day Atlases
Photo caption--Table Rocks in Ellsworth Co. Kans.
Photo caption--Johnson a little nervous

Also visit: Rock City, Ottawa County, KS, near Minneapolis

Rec'd from e-mail about Mushroom Rock State Park:

In or about 1905, these rock formations were in the north west corner of the 160 acre farm belonging to my grand dad, John Hornischer. That’s the year my deceased mother was born in Salina, KS. Her family was living on the farm outside of Carneiro, KS. We’ve even located the rock foundation/basement of the farmhouse in which they lived.

At one time, they lived in Carneiro where Granddaddy Hornischer ran a blacksmith shop. The blacksmith shop was in the basement, entered from the rear of the house. The family residence was located above the shop. We’ve located that rock foundation, also. The frame house was still standing when we discovered it several years ago. It has since deteriorated and collapsed.

We have a cousin living in Kanapolis, Betty Smith, who we visit when we travel from our homes in Texas to visit family in Colorado. We enjoy riding through the park when we pass that way.

Sincerely,
Rita Shaw Reindl
—5/31/2009

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