By and large, a drive through Kansas is desperately boring. Hays, Kansas, however, has a roadside billboard campaign that claims it is “better than your destination” — a clever slogan, and while it may not be exactly true, Hays is actually pretty cool.

Our primary Hays destination was the Sternberg Museum, a natural history museum that celebrates reptiles and archaeology.


The Little Girl liked it a lot.


You can see what paleontologists do while they’re working.


A guy’s gotta have his ocelot skin and typewriter, right?


And of course there are plenty of fossils to enjoy. New since my last visit was a special exhibit on the discovery and study of the archaeopteryx. This creature continues to be controversial.


The Little Girl and I went on the nature trail and saw quite a lot of good wildflowers as well.

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We had a tasty dinner in Hays, including the famed bierrock which we’d learned about last year but hadn’t had occasion to try out. Hays is proud of its German heritage, and it turned out to be a good place for beer as well.

Having enjoyed Hays if not thoroughly experienced it, we headed for Colorado.