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Energy and Environment

Photos: Travel Across The Kansas Countryside – Without Leaving Wichita

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Lu Anne Stephens
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KMUW

Cheryl Miller, president of the Kansas Ornithological Society and senior assistant dean in the Fairmount College of Liberal Arts and Sciences at Wichita State, scans the woods for songbirds. The path follows the trees along Chisholm Creek and then opens onto restored tallgrass prairie.

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Credit Lu Anne Stephens / KMUW
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KMUW

Chisholm Creek Park is part of Wichita’s Great Plains Nature Center — 282 acres just north of 29th Street between Oliver and Woodlawn.

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Credit Lu Anne Stephens / KMUW
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KMUW

Look closely: A deer is foraging, unconcerned by the occasional walkers nearby. Deer and other wildlife can be found throughout Chisholm Creek Park. The various habitats attract raccoons, possums, muskrats, and dozens of bird varieties. More than 200 varieties of birds have been recorded at the park.

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Credit Lu Anne Stephens / KMUW
/
KMUW

Even in the middle of the city, there’s a sense of space and isolation. Chisholm Creek Park attracts walkers, joggers, photographers and nature enthusiasts, but the design makes it easy to feel like you’re alone in the wilderness.

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A raised walkway stretches across wetlands. Each habitat at Chisholm Creek Park attracts specific varieties of wildlife and birds. The two-and-a-half miles of walking paths pass through wetlands, woodlands, ponds and prairie.

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Credit Lu Anne Stephens / KMUW
/
KMUW

Most of the park’s paths are paved, although wildlife – and humans – have worn trails into the woodlands. At this time of year, grass is starting to turn green while the trees haven’t awakened from winter.