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This state is an extraordinary mix of nature, history and culture. Big cities and all-but-deserted small towns. Breathtakingly beautiful mountains and miles of flatland. World-class art collections and the World Championship Cow Chip Throw. Here is a guide that will help you discover the real Oklahoma - whether you're an avid sportsperson or a family with young children eager to see the ghost towns and Indian festivals. hiking/backpacking trails, walking paths, rock climbing, public golf courses. Bike routes along back roads, mountain bike trails, areas open to off-road vehicles. Canoeing, rafting, kayaking, boating, fishing. Camps and trails for horseback riding. Powwows, Indian exhibits, festivals, arts & crafts fairs. Oklahoma's fascinating history and culture, from Geronimo, Sam Houston and Quanah Parker to Belle Starr, Will Rogers and Garth Brooks. The opportunity for adventure in Oklahoma is enormous. The two major urban areas, Oklahoma City and Tulsa, offer explorers a vast variety of museums, parks, gardens, and outdoor activities. When you get out into the countryside, snoop around the small towns, and visit the resorts, state parks, and wilderness areas, you truly experience the best of the state. Other than mammoth Texas, there isn't a state in North America with more natural and cultural diversity.Oklahoma City is the capital and geographic center of the state. Northeast of this midpoint is "green country," a potpourri of mountains, rivers, state parks, and tallgrass prairie. To the southeast is "Kiamichi country," with dense pine forests, tree-rimmed lakes, and misty mountain streams. "Southwest territory" offers dramatic landscapes dominated by the Wichita Mountains, which lure artists and writers as well as avid outdoorsmen. The "high plains" stretch northwest into the Panhandle, sprinkled with slow-paced towns and geologic mysteries that occur nowhere else in the world. More Native Americans live in Oklahoma than in any other state. Some of the 39 tribes headquartered here are truly native and lived in the area before Columbus discovered America. Others arrived in the 1830s when the US government established Indian Territory as a convenient dumping ground for native tribes who were hindering white settlement in other states. The Five Civilized Tribes who established protected capitals here during the 19th century are the Choctaw and Chickasaw from Mississippi, the Seminole from Florida, the Creek from Alabama, and the Cherokee from Carolina, Tennessee, and Georgia. The Cherokee move in 1838 was a four-month struggle that became known as "The Trail of Tears." Many adventures in this book relate to the Native American people because they have given Oklahoma a distinct personality and authentic character. Numerous place names are Indian words - "Oklahoma" is Choctaw for "red men" - and every region holds events to celebrate Indian customs. If this part of history interests you, use this book to seek out the best powwows, historical re-enactments, and native exhibits. This book will help you discover the real Oklahoma. A wide range of activities has been chosen to appeal to most every taste and skill level. There are suggestions for the avid sportsperson seeking the ultimate challenge as well as information on ventures safe enough for families with young children. If you're a curious armchair traveler, this book describes the state's best-known attractions so that you almost experience them yourself.