Channel 8 Road Trip: Legends come alive at Robbers Cave State Park
WILBURTON, Okla. (KTUL) —
It’s an unusual name for a park with a mysterious history. At Robbers Cave State Park, legends come alive from sightings of Bigfoot to searches for Jesse James’ buried treasure.
“The outlaw history fits in with the park,” said Park Ranger Mike Prince.
Prince’s passion for the park stated well before he began working there. One of his favorite things about the park goes all the way back to the late 1800s.
Legend has it a cave at the park was home to notorious outlaw Jesse James.
“It makes you think a little bit about the history, the legends,” said Prince.
Dubbed, Robbers Cave, the cave was a perfect hideout during the winter months for James and his crew during one particularly cold year around 1877. The view from the top of the cave made it easy to keep a look out and the creek that ran below was a perfect road map to main trading posts.
The outlaws had free range of the area until around 1880, when they were rounded up. However, that didn’t stop criminals.
“A lot of the old horse trails in this park are old moonshine trails,” said Prince. “The outlaw era didn’t end, just changed.”
Today the park plays to its history and legends.
Whispers of Bigfoot sightings have surrounded the park for generations. It’s now a place for kids, thrill seekers and treasure hunters. Legend has it, James may have buried treasure here but it hasn’t turned up yet.
“Don’t get me wrong, if I stumble across a gold bar, I might resign tomorrow,” laughed Prince.
Apart from his initials, James may have not left anything else behind. It’ll be up to you to decide what you’re more likely to find, Bigfoot or buried treasure.