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Map of Prairie Spirit Trail & Southwind Rail Trail

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Prairie Spirit Trail & Southwind Rail Trail

Prairie Spirit Trail Kansas map area

Prairie Spirit Trail & Southwind Rail Trail

LENGTH:

59 miles

SURFACE:

unpaved

COMMUNITIES:

Ottowa, Garrett, Colony, Carly, Iola, Bassett, Humbolt

HIGHLIGHTS:

Kansas countryside, rail-trail, small communities

NEARBY TRAILS:

Flint Hills Nature Trail

RELATED LINKS:

Kansas City
Topeka

The Prairie Spirit Trail and the South Wind Rail Trail form a continuous 59 miles of improved unpaved pathway that connects the cities of OttawaIola and Humboldt in East Central Kansas. The trails wander though the farmland of Kansas along an abandoned railroad bed. The trail goes over picturesque and historic railroad bridges, past old railroad signal towers, through quaint farming communities and has trees along each side for much of the route.

Prairie Spirit Trail

The Prairie Spirit Trail is a 52-mile mostly unpaved trail that extends from Ottowa to Iola in Eastern Kansas. Much of the trail has a shaded canopy from the trees on either side. It pathway is away from the roadside and runs alongside creeks and past farmland. There are a few crossings with local roads, but for the most part, you are away from the traffic. The Prairie Spirit Trail State Park is a linear park along the abandonded rail bed between Ottowa and Iola. The park passes through three counties and has several small parks along the route of the trail. There are fees associated with using the trail.

The north end of the Prairie Spirit Trail is located on the north side of the City of Ottowa, Kansas at the Old Depot Museum and near Forest Park. The paved trail heads to the south going across the Marias Des Cygnes River. You must travel along S. Walnut Street for a few blocks to get to the next section of the paved trail at W. 5th Street. From this point south, the Prairie Spirit Trail has its own separate pathway.

The Prairie Spirit Trail is paved through the City of Ottowa. There is a trailhead on the south end of town, just off of W. 17th Street. The trail goes under Interstate 35 alongside S. Princeton Street. the pavement ends just south of the off ramp for the interstate. At this point the unpaved trail kicks to the west and then south again. The surface is that of crushed limestone. It may not be suitable for all types of bicycles.

South of Ottowa, the Prairie Spirit Trail follows a route a ways away from Highway 59. It goes through the small farming communities of Princeton and Richmond. Just north of Garnett, it passes Lake Garnett and City Park. The Prairie Spirit Trail is paved as it goes through the heart of Garnett from Park Road to E. 13th Avenue. The trail goes right past the historic Santa Fe Depot on Main Street. South of Garnett, the trail goes through the small communities of Welda, Colony and Carlyle.

The Prairie Spirit Trail wraps around the west side of Iola. South of Austin Road, the trail has a paved surface. It crosses State Street just north of W. Garfield Street. There is a trailhead with parking off of State Street in this location. The paved trail continues south to reach Riverside Park. At this point the Prairie Spirit Trail ends and the Southwind Rail Trail begins.

Southwind Rail Trail

The Southwind Rail Trail is a 6.5-mile long unpaved trail that extends from Iola to Humboldt in Eastern Kansas. The north end of the trail is located at Riverside Park on Park Avenue on the southwest side of Iola. The surface of the trail is that of packed limestone. The trail goes across open farmland away from the roadways. The end of the Southwind Rail Trail is on the north end of the community of Humboldt on Highway 224.


Resources

Following are links to official off-site resources to find out more details about the Prairie Spirit Trail and the Southwind Rail Trail in East Central Kansas.

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