Mt. Magazine: Benefield E. Loop Trail Snow Photos Pt. 2

Mt. Magazine: Benefield E. Loop Trail Snow Photos Pt. 2 photo
This is where the trail continues after crossing the highway at the southeast corner of the trail. (Panoramic.)

Since winter snow is relatively infrequent in much of Arkansas (although we have had more than average this winter), I get excited about the chance to go out walking on a trail in the snow or just to get the chance to take pictures of the woods with a layer of freshly fallen snow.

One great opportunity for this I had was back on February 8 when I hiked the Benefield East Loop Trail at Mount Magazine. There were several inches of snow on the ground and a layer of ice in many places under that.

Mt. Magazine: Benefield E. Loop Trail Snow Photos Pt. 2 photo
Benefield East Loop Trail – Mount Magazine State Park

I posted some of the photos from my hike here.

In this post, I have more photos from my hike. (Click photo for larger view.) These were all taken on the mostly bluff line part of the loop that is south of Highway 309. It is probably the most scenic part of the trail. Continue reading Mt. Magazine: Benefield E. Loop Trail Snow Photos Pt. 2

Mount Nebo: Summit Park Trail Leaf-Off Pics

Mount Nebo: Summit Park Trail Leaf-Off Pics photo
Southwest-facing panoramic view from south end of Summit Park Trail near the juncture with the Rim Trail.

I think the Summit Park Trail, named for the former Summit Park Hotel (1889-1918) is one of the two best trails at Mount Nebo State Park (the other one being the Rim Trail). The Summit Park Trail makes a 1.6-mile loop across the west side of the mountain. About one-third of it is shared with the Rim Trail.

Most of the rest of it runs parallel to the Rim Trail, not far from the bench level. (For my gpx-based trail map and elevation profile, see this post.) 

Mount Nebo: Summit Park Trail Leaf-Off Pics photo
CCC-built steps descending from the Summit Park Trail trailhead.

One of the sites to see along the trail is Fern Lake. It was built to serve as a water source for the hotel.  Continue reading Mount Nebo: Summit Park Trail Leaf-Off Pics

Mt. Magazine: Benefield E. Loop Trail Snow Photos, Pt. 1

Mt. Magazine: Benefield E. Loop Trail Snow Photos, Pt. 1 photo
The junction at the northwest part of the loop where the Benefield Trail East Loop splits from the Bear Hollow Trail. (Panoramic.)

Last weekend, I got to do some snow hiking at Mount Magazine State Park. I was pretty excited because we don’t get all that many opportunities for snow hiking here in Arkansas.

I picked the 1-mile Benefield East Loop Trail because it is fairly short yet it has some awesome views. Unfortunately, there weren’t any scenic vista views because of fog conditions up on the mountain. But it was still a really cool hike. (And I got to try out my new heavy-duty Columbia Omni-Heat winter gloves.)

I started at the Benefield picnic area trailhead and hiked it clockwise.

Mt. Magazine: Benefield E. Loop Trail Snow Photos, Pt. 1 photo
Working my way downhill on the Benefield East Loop Trail, Mount Magazine. This is the sloped area along the northwest part of the loop. (Panoramic.)

There was about 3 inches of snow in most places on the trail with a half-inch of ice under that. It made the rocks on the downhill parts of the trail fairly slippery. (I only completely fell once though.) Navigating through the snow-and-ice-laden branches took extra work on some parts of the trail. Continue reading Mt. Magazine: Benefield E. Loop Trail Snow Photos, Pt. 1

Twin Falls of Richland (Ozark Forest)

Twin Falls of Richland is one of the more famous waterfall areas in northwest Arkansas. I first read about this waterfall about 10 years ago in Backpacker Magazine, and I quickly added it to my must-see list.

This destination is really is worthy of the national exposure.

Twin Falls of Richland (Ozark Forest) photo
Twin Falls of Richland

Twin Falls of Richland is in the Ozark National Forest’s Richland Creek Wilderness. (Trail guide author Tim Ernst uses the “Twin Falls of Richland” name because there are multiple Arkansas waterfalls with the name “Twin Falls.”)

Twin Falls is actually two different waterfalls from two different creeks — Big Devil’s Fork and Long Devil’s Fork — that merge together at this site. One of the falls is 17 feet tall. The other is 19 feet tall. They fall over into a glistening pool that is a great swimming hole.

Twin Falls of Richland (Ozark Forest) photo
Twin Falls of Richland

The easiest trail head to get to is via the Richland Creek campground, and it is a spectacular hike. When coming to the area, be sure to also check out Richland Falls and many of the other beautiful areas within the Richland Creek Wilderness Area.    Continue reading Twin Falls of Richland (Ozark Forest)