Mined Land Wildlife Areas #20-23

Strip pit in Area 21
Photo by Jim Mason

Dig into this one! Years ago huge motorized shovels stripped the overburden of earth here so that underlying coal could be removed. Over time the land has become a rough and rolling tract of shrublands, woodlands, and grasslands weaving around long, deep lakes and numerous small pits.

White PenstemonCottonwood, elm, hackberry, and oaks compose the woodlands. Native bluestems, switchgrass, and indiangrass have been planted as part of the wildlife management plan. An area office is located on unit 21 as is a 30-acre Canada goose restoration pen. The geese can be viewed year-round. Many species of dabbling and diving ducks, as well as osprey, can be seen during spring and fall migrations. In winter bald eagles are occasionally sighted around the lakes. Northern harriers are commonly seen over the grasslands. Several species of water turtles, beaver, muskrats, and raccoons are abundant around the pits throughout the year. The woodlands hold squirrels, owls, wild turkeys, and many songbirds. Watch in the evening and early morning for foxes, coyotes, bobcats, bobwhite quail, cottontail rabbits, and white-tailed deer.

White Penstemon is common along the roadsides in May.


Camping icon 2 cabins (make a reservation online).

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Trail icon No developed hiking trails.

Deer Trace Canoe Trail sign

Canoeing is allowed on all Mined Land Wildlife Area waters.

The Deer Trace Canoe Trail is within areas 20 & 21.  Access is from S. 80th Street between NW Bellview and NW Star Valley Roads.

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Location in Kansas Directions: From the junction of US-160 and K-7 at Columbus, drive 7 miles west on US-160. Travel 4 miles north on NW 70th Street, then 0.5 miles west on NW Bellview Road to get to the area field office.  Brochures are available at a kiosk there. 
To view a Google Map of this site, click here.

You may also download the brochure for the Mined Land Wildlife Areas from the KDWP web site,
or write the area office at:
Mined Land Wildlife Area
507 E. 560th Ave.
Pittsburg, KS 66762

Ownership: The entity responsible for management of this site is the Kansas Department of Wildlife, Parks & Tourism.  Call them at (620) 431-0380 if you have specific questions about use or management of the site.

2,000 acres
(The total area within all 46 parcels in the MLWA is over 14,000 acres)

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the Kansas Department of Wildlife, Parks & Tourism.

Re-publication of site content in any form other than for personal use requires written permission.  If you are a Kansas resident, please assist with this and other wildlife viewing and conservation programs by contributing to the Chickadee Checkoff on your state tax form.

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Kansas Department of Wildlife, Parks & Tourism