The Red Buffalo Ranch sprawls across 8,000 acres, just west of Sedan, Kansas. It is owned by television personality Bill Kurtis, who was born in nearby Independence, Kansas and has done a lot to encourage the development and survival of both communities.
In May of 2008, I had the pleasure of meeting ranch staff, Dane and Wade, who took me on a 3 hour tour of Red Buffalo Ranch in a 30 year old, open sided Land Rover. Riding in the back of the Land Rover was fun, even over ground that was very rough.
We visited Butcher Falls (impressive between its rock wall like banks), Prairiehenge (a modern stonehenge built by artist Stan Herd) and photographed wildlife. While searching for buffalo, we stumbled across a group of 3 whitetail deer that seemed not at all afraid of us. Although they don't have antlers in the spring, this area of southeast Kansas produces deer with some of the largest racks found anywhere in the world.
Finally we located a group of buffalo. There are over 50 on the ranch, but this group was all bulls. These are wild buffalo, not at all domesticated. We pulled the Land Rover onto a bluff just out of sight of the herd, but by the time we were out of the Land Rover, a solitary bull was investigating us and slowly approached to within about 40 yards. We stayed very close to the vehicle. Finally the bull moved a bit further away and more bulls came into view in ones and twos until there were 8 bulls, up to about 1200 pounds in size, in a grouping about 40 - 60 yards away.
We spent a lot more time than I planned at the Red Buffalo Ranch, but it was very enjoyable, I got many photos and it was well worth while. Dane and Wade were great.
Red Buffalo Ranch offers group tours and events, a River Cabin on the Ranch, Tallgrass Beef Company with 100% grass-fed beef, nature trails, fishing, and (new in 2008) provides the opportunity for guided hunting of turkey and whitetail deer. Two other homes are available for rent in Sedan. The Ranch is evolving over time and new features or activities will probably be added in the near future.
For access to the Butcher Falls and the rest of Red Buffalo Ranch call (620) 725-4022, or stop by the Red Buffalo Gift shop 107 E. Main, Sedan, KS 67361 and talk to Mary Kurtis. Open Monday - Saturday 9 AM - 5 PM. While you are there, be sure to visit the coffee and ice cream bar at the rear of the store.
copyright 2008-2009 by Keith Stokes