Kanopolis State Park: KS

Where else would Kanopolis State Park be but in Kansas? Thanks to the Flood Control Act of 1938 who authorized the construction of Kanopolis Dam and Lake, we can enjoy it almost a 100 years later. The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers began work in June 1940, but with World War II, construction was delayed and finally completed in 1948. It cost of $12.3 million Water storage started on February 17, 1948. Kanopolis Lake was the first reservoir built in the Corps of Engineers’ Kansas City District and the organization still oversees it today.

Kanopolis Dam is a rolled earth-fill embankment dam with riprap on its upstream face. It stands 131 feet (40 m) tall and 15,360 feet (4,680 m) long.[6] At its crest, the dam has an elevation of 1,537 feet (468 m). — Wikipedia

Kanopolis was the first state park in Kansas. The park contains rolling hills, bluffs and woods. It is located in the Smoky Hills region. The scenery contains very large Dakota sandstone bluffs suitable for easy climbing, also caves and crevices of Horsethief Canyon. There are many stunning views around the whole lake. The lake has two parts, North and South areas split by the dam. There are also two Federal Parks in the area.

Kanopolis offers more than 30 miles of trails open to hikers, mountain bikers, and horseback riders, 15 of which are on the Smoky Hill Wildlife Area. The 3,500-acre lake and 12,500-acre wildlife area provide anglers and hunters abundant fish and game. Nestled near the Smoky Hill River toward the northwest portion of the wildlife area is Faris Caves, which were carved by early pioneers and served as milk house, school house, and living quarters. Wildlife viewing and photography opportunities are plentiful. In the winter, bald eagles and ospreys fish the river. Songbirds and wildflowers brighten the landscape throughout the area. — Kansas State Parks

Kanopolis State Park also manages nearby Mushroom Rock State Park,

We hiked and camped at Kanopolis. We’ll be back soon.


The Deets:
31 miles of trails amid woods, bluffs & a reservoir, plus a marina, horse rental, camping & cabins.

Address: 200 Horsethief Rd, Marquette, KS 67464 Phone: (785) 546-2565

Points of interest: The Faris Caves are located in the Smoky Hill Wildlife Area northwest of the reservoir. Carved into the sandstone cliffs along the Smoky Hill River by early American settlers, they once served as a school house, living quarters, and a milk house.

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