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Come to a land marked by the footprints of dinosaurs, lined with red canyons and blanketed in prairie grass and golden wheat. Cowboy country since the days of the Chisholm Trail, northwest Oklahoma is as hospitable as broken-in saddle leather.. Choose a park in Northwestern Oklahoma
Northwestern Oklahoma Parks and Resorts
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Visiting the red landscapes of northwest Oklahoma you will see sand dunes, majestic buttes and canyons carved by long disappeared oceans. Red Carpet Country stretches from the oil-rich prairies and agricultural communities around Ponca City to the Panhandle. Bison roamed this land, moving in massive herds until the 1870's, when the last of the herds was seen near Fort Supply. Northwest Oklahoma was home to the teepees of the Cheyenne tribe, which wintered in the region and hunted bison.
When the 19th century drew to a close, the area, then known as the Cherokee Outlet, was opened to settlement. In 1893, over 100,000 settlers raced into the area, many claiming 160 acre sections that were used as homesteads and wheat farms, and because building materials often were scarce, pioneers used topsoil to build sod houses. An original sod house, built in 1894, is preserved for visitors at the Sod House Museum in Aline.
Changes in topography turn Red Carpet Country visits into adventures. Volcanic eruptions created the towering mesas of the Panhandle. Black Mesa near Kenton, is the largest, a 4,973 foot rock tower, and is a favorite of both sightseers and adventurous mountain climbers.
At Little Sahara State Park, visitors can take guided dune buggy rides, or steer their own, up and down 40 foot sand dunes. Salt Plains Federal Wildlife Refuge features salt plains where visitors can dig selenite crystals from April through October and the area is home to thousands of pelicans and egrets that flock there every autumn.
Woodward is the largest city near a triangle of some of the state's most unique parks: Alabaster Caverns, Little Sahara and Boiling Springs. Cities thrive in Red Carpet Country from the oil and farming fueled cities of Ponca City and Enid to smaller towns like Kingfisher, Perry, Ft. Cobb and Watonga, home of Roman Nose Resort Park, and Freedom, a tiny community with old west building facades that hosts the Old Cowhand Reunion and Freedom Rodeo every summer.
At the Black Kettle Museum and the Washita Battlefield National Historic Site in Cheyenne, a dark piece of history is memorialized..........the massacre of a Cheyenne village by Col. George Custer and the Fifth Cavalry. There are also palaces like the Marland Mansion, a Ponca City landmark, and comfy places to stay like Enid's Worthington House Bed & Breakfast and the Anna Augusta Inn Bed and Breakfast in Woodward.
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