Our 2012 Travels travel blog

Monument erected on the ridge to Herbert Steele

 

Steele Home Museum

Back of Steele Home Museum

The bushes here were full of butterflies

Sign to El Cuartelejo

Monument to El Cuartelejo Indian Ruins

Bottom of the Monument

Mary in front of the Monument

Information Sign

Exhibit Information Sign

Ruins

Ruins

Small Dam on the Lake

Scenic area

An American Avocet at the Beach Area

 

Panorama of Lake Scott

 

 


Lake Scott was a finalist in the 8 Wonders of Kansas Geologic entries (see http://www.kansassampler.org/8wonders) but it didn't place. It is located 14 miles north of Scott City on U.S. 83 and then 3 miles northwest on K-95.

We decided that it looked like a great place to camp for a couple of nights. Lake Scott is another oasis in the desert. The area has water, trees and it isn't flat which makes it stand out in its surroundings. It is situated in a valley which is carved from sand and gravel which have been naturally cemented together to form the Ogallala Formation. The formation surrounds Lake Scott.

There are a lot of interesting things to see in the park itself. We took the time to investigate the remnants of the El Cuartelejo Pueblo Indian Ruins. Only the lower portions of the walls remain but there are exhibit signs that show how the original pueblo looked. The indians probably thought this was a terrific place to live as there are springs that feed Lake Scott and in the 1600's they used the spring water to form irrigation ditches in this area. It would also probably be nice and private land since it was surrounded by the Ogallala formation.

The indian ruins were found by Herbert Steel in 1898. Mr. Steel and his wife, Eliza, built a sandstone home on the property which was their homestead. The homestead is also still on the park grounds and we wandered over to get a closer look at it. It was certainly in a beautiful location with a creek right behind the house. They probably fished there then as we saw fisherman out there today. The Steeles sold their homestead and 640 acres to the Kansas Forestry, Fish and Game Commission in 1928 and now we are all able to enjoy Lake Scott State Park. There is a granite monument high on the ridge in front of the Steel home which was placed there in memory of Herbert Steele.

The camping area in the park is also nice and in the site we were in, we could see the lake from our dining room window. We walked around the park for some exercise and came across a little beach and beach store that would probably be packed with people except that it was not warm enough yet! We were amazed to see an American Avocet at the beach. He was standing next to a Canadian Goose. We've never seen one this far north before or one that was by himself. We wandered down the short ways since there is a nice walkway and benches along the lake. We sat on a bench and just enjoyed the setting sun and then wandered back to our home on wheels.



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