Trail Report Week 5: The Ernie Miller Nature Trail

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Located in the western KC suburb of Olathe, the Ernie Nature Center Trail offers hiking in a family-friendly setting. The park has four circular trails three of which have paving. This park has been the only one where I have seen parents with small children on the trails. 




The red trail is called the “South Trail “it is the largest at about three miles. The other paths are all about 1.5 miles each.
The park has a nature center offering education services and day camp in the summer. They have a barred owl who was injured and was unable to be returned to the wild. He/She was very talkative to me while I was taking pictures.


There were several open fields with Wildflowers





While the park was pouring concrete a raccoon needed to cross the path and the cement dried before they could correct the paw prints


The ridge trail is the most challenging and is the only one without pavement.


Someone had taken branches and made a shelter


The trails are densely wooded which proved to be a relief from the July sun


This trail had a new coat of asphalt and was way too hot to walk on.


Two roads converged in a wood and I,  I took the one more traveled by because I didn’t want to get lost…..Apologies to Robert Frost.


One of the trails led to an amphitheater in the middle of the woods.



A dedication that was on the bench where I had sat down

The Park is a great place for a hike especially if your family with you. The trails are short and circular. Three of the trails are almost entirely flat and you will definitely see several deer and there is a pond that is full of turtles. 

PROS: Very well maintained trails, A fun educational center with some birds of prey on display. The trees offer great cover in the summer. 

CONS:  Long distance from the city center, Somewhat hard to locate, There have been copperheads and timber rattlesnakes spotted. (although they usually aren’t aggressive)

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