The past six blog posts have dealt with state high points that are solidly on the Great Plains. Before moving on to other subjects, I wanted to conclude with two “honorable mentions” for two very different reasons.
Honorable Mention #1: Fishers Peak, Colorado (elev. 9,655 feet)
I mentioned this peak in the post about Harney Peak in South Dakota, and the more I thought about it, the more I think it deserves the distinct recognition as the highest point in the entire Great Plains. No matter how you want to define the Great Plains, it is generally agreed upon that the western boundary is the Rocky Mountain foothills. Now, unless you decide to consider the entire Raton Mesa, and the surrounding volcanic region, as foothills to the Rockies, you have to conclude that Fishers Peak is part of the Great Plains, and therefore its highest point. I’ll admit that this is probably up for debate, and I welcome anyone who wants to start the discussion, but for now, I’m declaring Fishers Peak to be the highest point of the Great Plains!
Honorable Mention #2: Hawkeye Point, Iowa (elev. 1,670 feet)
Here is another state high point that does not quite qualify as being on the high plains, but it is most definitely part of the larger plains and prairie region. Hawkeye Point is in northwestern Iowa and is part of a privately owned farm. The high point is near the farm house, but has public access, and a view of the surrounding cornfields. It is little more than a slight swell of land and maybe only 15-20 feet above most of the rest of the farm, but it does have the prestige of being a sure enough state high point. It deserves a mention here because it’s part of the once vast tallgrass prairies of the Midwest, and only a little bit east of what most people consider to be the Great Plains.