Gloss Mountains State Park - Oklahoma
In Western Oklahoma there are several great State Parks and between them some really pretty scenic drives. Recently Darrell and I spent the day driving from The Great Salt Plains to Little Sahara and on to Gloss Mountains.
This is the second time I've been to Gloss Mountains State Park and I enjoyed it just as much as the first time. There isn’t much to do besides climb the stairs and explore the top of Cathedral Mountain but it’s worth the drive all on its own. I really love this area; it's stark and beautiful and so different from anything near Oklahoma City. And if you're planning a day trip this is a perfect spot to head towards. It wasn't very crowded on a Saturday afternoon in December, even though we shared the mesa with a few other people, and I enjoyed the feeling of solitude.
A steep set of stairs zigzags to the top of the mesa. The landscape surrounding the park is dotted with oil drilling sites and the flash of cars speeding by on the highway. But with the wind blowing and the sun lowering in the sky you still feel apart from it all and surrounded by nature. The area gets its name from selenite gypsum which catches light like stardust, pieces of brightness caught by the earth reflecting light. It's beautiful and unusual.
The walk up and around the mesa takes about an hour if you're in a hurry but it's worth it to slow down and enjoy the view. Just keep in mind that the stairs are steep and bring water with you.
A few things to know before you go -
north of Fairview off highway 412
it’s free - open sunrise to sunset
it’s illegal to take any of the gypsum home with you - if you want crystals you can take home check out The Great Salt Plains digging area