GEARY COUNTY — Travel and landscape photographer Mickey Shannon, of Wichita, has visited most of the 80 waterfalls in Kansas on his list.
In a 2017 blog on "There's No Place Like Kansas" website, Shannon ranked Geary Lake Falls No. 1.
Located south of Junction City, Geary County Falls is formed by the outlet from Geary State Fishing Lake and is only active in the spring or after a heavy rain. Like most spillway falls in Kansas, when the water is running low, they nearly dry up.
Here's a tip from Shannon when visiting these falls: "The main viewpoint is from the top of the falls, but if you follow a little path down through the trees and do a bit of rock-hopping on the creek, it leads you to the vantage point from below the falls."
To get to Geary Lake Falls from Interstate 70 in Junction City, drive south 6 miles on US-77 highway. Turn right (west) on State Lake Road about 2,000 feet to the sign that says "Geary State Lake" on your left. Turn into the park (there is no cost), over the top of the hill and off onto the unimproved road to your right. Park at the northeast end of the lake and walk about a quarter-mile across the dam.
Just across the dam, there is a narrow worn path. It is a short walk to the falls, but the footing is irregular with occasional steep spots. This gets you to the top of the 35-foot falls.
Getting down below the falls for a better view isn't easy walking. There is a steep slope with mud and trees to work through, but it is worth the effort.
In addition to the main falls, there are several tiny falls to the sides where water seeps through the rocks and emerges.