Nature November 14, 2016
This Natural Wonders Road Trip Will Show You Oklahoma Like You’ve Never Seen It Before
As a state with four distinct seasons, Oklahoma’s landscape looks very different throughout the year. Every season displays beautiful landscape but we think the prettiest time to see the state is during the fall. Nature lovers will enjoy this natural wonders road trip that will lead you to some of Oklahoma’s magical places. We’ve already featured the
eastern portion of the state, so now it’s time to see the beauty in western and central Oklahoma. It’s best to plan a few days for this trip so you can enjoy the scenery at each stop. There’s a little hidden resort along the way where you can stay the night, or choose from one of Oklahoma’s charming Bed & Breakfasts.
You can begin your journey at any destination on this
map…just find the closest starting point to you. Ready to go exploring on this natural wonders adventure? Let the fun begin…
During these uncertain times, please keep safety in mind and consider adding destinations to your bucket list to visit at a later date.
The road trip is 509 miles long and approximately 10 hours without stops. You can find the full map with directions
1. Great Salt Plains State Park, Jet
The Great Salt Plains State Park is comprised of a huge expanse of salt plains that are remnants of an ancient ocean that once covered this part of Oklahoma. The refuge is the only spot in the world where crystal enthusiasts can dig for hourglass selenite crystals, a rare and fragile form of selenite, which is a form of gypsum.
2. Little Sahara State Park, Waynoka
Now head out to explore Little Sahara, named for its resemblance to the Sahara Desert. The vast dunes have formed over time from terrace deposits. The park offers over 1,600 acres of rideable sand dunes ranging in height from 25 feet to 75 ft. Amenities include showers, picnic areas, RV hookups with electric/water and tent sites. Seasonal concessions provide refreshment, and fuel and grocery are located nearby. You can rent ATVs and dune buggies or view the vast beauty from the viewing platform.
3. Gloss Mountain State Park, Fairview
The name of the park is derived from the selenite crystals that sparkle on the slopes and tops of the mesas. Gloss Mountain is a group of mesas and buttes that extend from the Permian red buds in Major County. The mountains extend about 150-200 feet above the surface of the plains, with the highest elevation reaching 1,600 feet.
4. Roman Nose State Park, Watonga
As one of the original seven state parks in Oklahoma, Roman Nose State Park is a hidden gem in Watonga. The park offers captivating canyon views, hidden waterfalls, hiking trails, a beautiful lodge and many outdoor activities.
5. Red Rock Canyon State Park, Hinton
The stunning backdrop of the red canyon walls makes Red Rock Canyon a prime camping spot in west-central Oklahoma. The park has lots of hiking trails and is best-known for rappelling. Visitors can also cast a line in the fishing pond or pitch a tent for an overnight camping trip.
6. Quartz Mountain, Lone Wolf
Quartz Mountain is also called Baldy Point and is located in southwest Oklahoma. The mountain overlooks the beautiful Lake Altus-Lugert and is one of the most western peaks in the Wichita Mountains. It is made up of mostly pink-red Lugert granite and Reformatory granite.
>>>>OVERNIGHT STOP<<<<<< (Quartz Mountain Resort)
If you choose to spend the night at Quartz Mountain Resort in Lone Wolf, the mileage of the first day trip will be 254 miles if you began your journey at Great Salt Plains State Park. The resort is a premiere, yet secluded, lodge-style destination hotel that is surrounded by stunning mountains and rugged beauty. Guests of the resort can enjoy a myriad of outdoor activities including biking, hiking, swimming, boating, fishing and golfing.
8. Wichita Mountains Wildlife Refuge, Lawton
Located in the southwestern portion of Oklahoma, The Wichita Mountains are rock promontories and rounded hills made of igneous rocks, sedimentary rocks and large boulders. Haley Peak is the highest point in the mountains at 2,481 feet. Fort Sill occupies a large portion of the southeastern end of the mountains.
9. Lake Murray State Park, Ardmore
Lake Murray State Park, located in Ardmore, is full of outdoor activities to keep the whole family busy from sunup to sundown. It is the largest state park in the state, boasting over 12,000 acres of exceptional beauty. It's also home to the iconic Tucker Tower - a geological museum and nature center open to the public.
10. Arbuckle Mountains, Davis
The Arbuckle mountain range is located in south-central Oklahoma and is the oldest known formations in the U.S. between the Appalachian and Rocky Mountains. The range reaches 1,412 feet above sea level. The Arbuckles contain the popular Turner Falls Park and Chickasaw National Recreation Area.
11. Chickasaw National Recreation Area, Sulphur
Situated in the foothills of the Arbuckle Mountains in south-central Oklahoma, Chickasaw National Recreation Area is full of natural and mineral springs that attract visitors from all over the country. As you can see, the fall foliage is stunning this time of year. Be sure to get out and explore the area.
Does this look like an adventure you would like to take? If you take this journey, make sure to post your pictures to our