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Wichita Mountains Wildlife Refuge

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#1 clover

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Posted 29 November 2019 - 12:02 PM

My son and I finally checked off a trip on our "Bucket List", Wichita Mountains Wildlife Refuge west of Lawton, OK. 

 

Our good Casita friends, Donna & Joe, have made multiple trips to the refuge and always gave it high marks. We never seemed to find the right time to go on the trip, it was just 200 miles away from home. 

https://www.fws.gov/...hita_mountains/

https://www.youtube....h?v=28FHyMmrh2I

 

Folks, I have to say it was better than we ever expected. It was the first Wildlife Refuge established in the USA in 1901, primarily to try to save the Buffalo. They also claim to have the most genetically "correct"  herd of Texas Longhorns. They re-introduced Elk to the area as well. 

 

Visually it is great to see as the mountains just pop-up out of the flat landscape as we were driving in from the flat land around the Red River. 

 

We did a lot of hiking, Elk Mountain provided great vistas of the area. The refuge is dotted with some marvelous (13) little lakes put in by the CCC. Scott's Mountain is a "got to see" vista. 

 

The WPA built the Holy City near Lake Jed Johnson Reservoir on the refuge. It is said to be a replica of old Jerusalem.  https://www.youtube....h?v=njbGSiPUST8

https://www.okhistor...php?entry=HO018

https://www.atlasobs...of-the-wichitas

 

 

There are 70 sites suitable for our Casitas. Only 23 have electricity, the other 47 are for dry camping. All sites a very nice, paved pads with fire ring. The electric sites are closer together, however the non-electric sites are spread out and I would say most are very private. It is first come first serve so no reservations. We chose the non-electric sites at $10/nite. With my Geezer Pass it was only $5/nite. The electric sites are $20/nite. 

 

Have a full fresh water tank when you come in. There is limited access to potable water. We also had brought 10 gallons of water in fresh containers for cooking, etc. We don't drink or cook with the on-board fresh water.  

 

The refuge is adjacent to Fort Sill, a rather large army base. We found it interesting to be hiking is such a remote area and hear artillery fire in the background. It was not to the level of offensive, just interesting. 

 

We plan on returning in the Spring. They say the wildflowers are breath taking beautiful. 


  • Dutchman, Alva, Jerrybob and 1 other like this

Happy Trails!
Clover
2003 17' SD
2002 F350 Diesel Crew Cab
(I know it is overkill but we live on a real ranch it takes a vacation with the Casita)


#2 Hot Toddy

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Posted 30 November 2019 - 08:09 AM

Thanks for the lead Clover. It looks like a keeper. We have added it to our list of destinations. I like to hike and you had me with mountain vistas and spring wildflower blooms. I bet the night sky is amazing for those of us star gazers? It is only 201 miles from our doorstep, so definitely doable on a nice long weekend. I appreciate you!

Toddy

#3 West Texan

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Posted 30 November 2019 - 06:06 PM

223 miles for me. LOL

#4 clover

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Posted 01 December 2019 - 07:33 AM

Toddy, I know you attend some of the rallies. Look up Joe & Donna, they frequent WMWR several times a year. They know all of the local sidebars to go visit. They don't do hiking but other local treasures, they know well. 

 

This is like Fort Griffin you brought up on the forum, a jewel worth sharing. 


Happy Trails!
Clover
2003 17' SD
2002 F350 Diesel Crew Cab
(I know it is overkill but we live on a real ranch it takes a vacation with the Casita)


#5 Carol Christensen

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Posted 08 December 2019 - 10:58 PM

Thanks for a great travel report.  Wichita Mountains Wildlife Refuge looks like a place I would enjoy a lot.  I've always wanted to visit the prairie grasslands and see the Bison.  I just wish it wasn't so far away.


Carol Christensen
2005 17' LD Nova & 2001 Toyota 4Runner

pre-Nova was Ova-the-Rainbow 1999 17' LD (sold)



Don't believe everything you think.

#6 Dutchman

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Posted 09 December 2019 - 05:27 PM

Only 886 miles for me.  A wee bit long for an overnight.  Nice report, has been put on the list of possibles.

 

While I think of it, for those of us in the West,  Theodore Roosevelt national park in North Dakota is a similar gem. Especially the north unit.  I woke up one morning because of a noise, stepped outside and found several bison in my camp site.  They  wander all over, no fence except on the edges of the very large unit.  No hookups,  forested and grassland.  The southern unit, near Medora, is also beautiful but busier since that unit is just of the highway.

 

Dutchman


Edouard Trautwein, #1372  

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#7 clover

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Posted 10 December 2019 - 12:33 PM

We've always leaned more towards the undeveloped camping, dispersed camping, boon-docking  areas and even more so now that it is more difficult to get sites and the crowds are elbow to elbow. Our little white pearls are ideal for this kind of remote or off grid camping. 

 

Theodore Roosevelt is added to my list.  We've gotten as far north a Yellowstone then across to the Black Hills & Badlands. My next trip in that direction is Glacier NP and  the Little Big Horn. Roosevelt would make a good turning point to head back east that south for another trip through the Black Hills. I'd like to spend a couple of weeks in the Black Hills. 


Happy Trails!
Clover
2003 17' SD
2002 F350 Diesel Crew Cab
(I know it is overkill but we live on a real ranch it takes a vacation with the Casita)