At 4,039 feet above sea level, Mount Sunflower is the highest point in Kansas. It is located at the far west side of Kansas on the Harold Family Ranch in Wallace County. Mount Sunflower is 3,360 feet above the state's lowest point near Coffeyville, Kansas.
Some people would describe Mount Sunflower as a barely noticeable rise in the middle of a field on a ranch 1/2 mile from the Colorado border. But they would lack vision.
For over 30 years the ranch owners have erected a small shrine on Mount Sunflower. There is a covered picnic area, metal sculpture, rocks, a memorial to Edward and Elizabeth Harold (who homesteaded the ranch in 1905) and a mail box which contains a guest book and a few details about the spot. On the 102 degree August day that I visited Mount Sunflower, three parties had already signed the register before me. Included with the guest register, is an invitation to stop by the ranch house and tell "about your trials and tribulations to the lofty summit. Local guides are also available at the homestead for an outrageous fee."
You can't get to Mount Sunflower without driving long distances on gravel roads. From US 40 take Road WA S-3 (3 miles west of Weskan, Kansas) north for 13 miles, turn west on un-named road (there is a Mount Sunflower sign) just over 1 mile, then turn right (north) onto the ranch at the clearly marked Mount Sunflower entrance.
From I-70, take Kansas Highway 27 south from Goodland for 17 miles, turn west on Road WA-W-BB for 12 miles, south on Road WA-N6 for 4 miles, west on WA-W-X Road for 3 miles, south on Road WA S-3 for one mile, west on un-named road just over 1, then turn right (north) onto the ranch at the clearly marked Mount Sunflower entrance. Most, but not all, of the turns on the way to Mount Sunflower have signs.
December 2011 Update: Mount Sunflower was vandalized this fall, but the Harolds are keeping it open to the public and replacing the ruined items. Please join the Kansas Explorers in encouraging and thanking them with a letter of encouragement and perhaps a $5 donation at 2425 Road 3, Weskan, KS 67762.
copyright 2005-2011 by Keith Stokes