Take a break off of I-70 and explore Castle Rock and the adjourning Badlands. Castle Rock is “one of the 8 Wonders of Kansas.”
For the scenic route, exit I-70 at the Collyer Exit #115. Collyer is a small rural community located in Trego County in Northwest Kansas. Turn south on Banner Road and drive 12.4 miles. As you approach the Castle Rock area, you will be able to view Castle Rock and all the Badlands. Turn west on TR CO U Road and travel 2.8 miles. U Road will become GO Co K Road as you travel into Gove County. Turn north at the Castle Rock sign and cross the cattle grate to enter. If you drive straight ahead, you can park on a rocky bluff overlooking the Hackberry Creek Valley. Follow the path down to the left to descend into the valley. This path is very rough and a high clearance vehicle is recommended. These roads and paths can be dangerous when muddy.
Explore around Castle Rock or the Badlands. Look for shark’s teeth or other fossils among the chalk rocks. Also look for prairie wildflowers and native grasses in season. You may also see wagon ruts left by the Butterfield Overland Despatch (BOD) stagecoaches in 1865.
To return to I-70, retrace your path to the entrance. Turn west on GO CO K Road and travel 4 miles. Then turn north on Castle Rock Road for 14.6 miles till you reach Quinter at I-70 Exit # 107. For further information, go to http://www.naturalkansas.org/castle.htm.