Mushroom Rock State Park - Marquette, Kansas
About 20 miles SW of Salina, Kansas off Highway 140 is Kansas' smallest state park - Mushroom Rock State Park. The 5 acre park is about 2 miles south of the highway on dirt roads that can be very bad after a rain. The park is surrounded by farms and you can usually hear cattle lowing nearby.
It has Dakota sandstone concretions much like Rock City, but here most are not nearly as exposed. There could be a great many concretions at this park, but almost all are still covered by the surrounding soil and only a portion is seen. The underlying rock is softer sandstone and is eroding away, but some of it still remains and has been supporting three of the rocks for many years.
The resulting combination of rocks have a mushroom shape. The unusual shapes caught the imaginations of the Native Americans and pioneers, some of whom have left graffiti in the limestone and sandstone.
There are Picnic tables and a rough toilet.
This may be the smallest state park in Kansas, but I think it is also one of the coolest!
Mushroom Rock State Park has been a travel destination for generations. The following photos were contributed by Earl Hooper. His father, Clearance, was born near Ellsworth, Kansas in 1911 and these are family photos from about 1920.
copyright 2002-2011 by Keith Stokes