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Serenading a historic landmark





MONUMENT ROCKS -- It's not uncommon to see a number of people photographing the scenic Monument Rocks in western Gove County.

But it's not often you'll find a laid-back, guitar-playing traveler on a slow-but-steady drive from Florida to the West Coast.

Along the way, Scott Berman -- his immediate destination Denver -- took the time to marvel at sites in Kansas.

Castle Rock, he said, was his favorite site, even though he also stopped at Mushroom Rocks State Park in Ellsworth County and at Monument Rocks, likely his final destination in Kansas.

He made the Monument Rocks stop on the advice of someone he met at the cross-county Castle Rock, together one of the Eight Wonders of Kansas.

Visitors that day from California also had stopped at Mushroom Rocks, but didn't make the stop at Castle Rock.

"I happened to be passing through the area," Berman said as he played his guitar.

Meanwhile, travelers from Texas were photographing several of the limestone spires down the road from where Berman strummed his guitar while waiting for his car to cool down so he could safely check the water level in the radiator.

"Just passing through," he said of his travels from Florida to Denver, where he plans to stay with friends for a while. "I'm from Florida. I'm not going back."

Instead, Berman said he plans eventually to make his way to Washington.

"Sort of a meandering journey," he said. "I left in October."

He hadn't planned on making several stops in Kansas, however.

"I love it out here," he said as he looked around the area.

He favored Castle Rock, however, especially the limestone outcroppings to the south of the spire.

But he wasn't about to take anything away from Monument Rocks.

"This is a beautiful place," he said.