|Subject: Re: Wichita, KS|
A short drive from Wichita will bring you to one of the last vestiges of the 19th century unfettered prairie and one of the newest US national parks - the Tallgrass Prairie Preserve - http://www.nps.gov/tapr
The Tallgrass Prairie Preserve is just that - acres of land protected for future generations that is as close as can be to the open midwestern prairie land before ranches, paved roads, fences, oil drilling, etc. It may not sound that exciting, but there are tours and hiking trails so that you can see both the vistas and the small flora and fauna. Remember the line in America the Beautiful, "O beautiful for spacious skies, for amber waves of grain"? You will see vivid examples of what those lyrics represent at the preserve. I always feel a patriotic pride when I see all that open land. Did I also mention that admission is free?
The New York Times had a nice write up on it several years ago that you may find valuable - http://tinyurl.com/b876s (note - free registration may be required)
Mark in Los Angeles but orig. from northeastern Oklahoma.