When traveling through Oklahoma you often find rolling plains dotted only with small hills. Typically these areas are a different kind of beautiful for those who are looking for lush surround and mountainous peaks. But the beauty that lies within certain areas of Oklahoma is quite different than the norm. It is here you will find mountainous regions and exploration that will take your adventures to a level you might never expect to achieve in Oklahoma.
Nestled in the San Bois Mountains just inside the border of Oklahoma you will find numerous state parks that post features such as rolling waterfalls, viewpoints that will leave you in awe, and yes mountains!
It was on one such adventure that I discovered Robber’s Cave State Park. Even looking at this online words could not do it justice as the elevation began to climb and pine trees began to rise high into the sky line. Pulling into the park I was immediately greeted by activities and fun.
It came as a big surprise to me learning that this state park not only has three lakes but a beautiful astounding waterway which passes throughout the park. The gentle rise and fall of cascading movement is peaceful to listen to an even more exciting to see. Gorgeous areas for swimming, kayaking, canoeing and paddle boating abound. You are likely to see fisherman casting their lines into the many waterways.
At the common areas mini golf, swimming pools, equestrian areas and tours are accessible for families to truly enjoy this destination. It is a location that seems to cater to everyone!
But far beyond the commercial aspect of the park, lays a historic past which is can be explored by a hike to the top of one of the park’s most iconic locations. Robber’s Cave, isn’t just a name it is a reality!!!
Long before the park became a park in 1929, the land was roamed openly and freely by Native Americans. The tribes which once roamed these lands archaeologist have discovered were related to those of the Spiro Mound builders. Following these Osage and Caddo tribes moved into the area and dominated the area for many years.
Following the Civil War, this area became known for a far more menacing reason however, as it became a well known hide out for fugitives running from the law. It is said the Jesse James and Belle Starr once used this area as a hide out as did the Dalton Gang, Youngers and Rufus Buck Gang.
From the time in history, the caves were ideal for being able to hide and go undetected. They were high enough atop the land that they could serve as a vantage point for the fugitives to observe the lands surrounding as at the time there was not as much tree coverage.
It is said during one stay at the cave that a person which had stolen much money from a local bank, fled to the mountains to hide and ended up hiding their treasures in the mountains. This can be confirmed by finds which have been made many years later of gold bands which can be linked to the robbery.
Rumors still circulate that somewhere amidst all of the rocky surface there could still be hidden treasure. However, the access to that treasure is bleak as rock shifting and caving since that time has sealed off a portion of the cave area.
With literally “Gold In Them There Hills” it is worth the intrigue of taking the hike to the top and following the footsteps of some of the most infamous in history. The views and idea of finding possible treasure will not disappoint!!
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