Tag - Pinnacle Mountain State Park

Trails at Pinnacle Mountain State Park, Pulaski County, near Little Rock.

Pinnacle Mountain: Summit Trail Loop – 3 mi

Pinnacle Mountain: Summit Trail Loop - 3 mi photo
Pinnacle Mountain, Pinnacle Mountain State Park

This 2.6-mile loop at Pinnacle Mountain State Park (Pulaski County near west Little Rock) takes you to the summit of Pinnacle Mountain. It includes the West Summit Trail, East Summit Trail, and the north half of the Base Trail (connecting the two summit trails).

The summit of Pinnacle Mountain is one of Arkansas’s must-see hiking destinations. It is challenging, but it is a scenic and interesting hike with amazing views.

The Pinnacle Mountain summit trails are not the hardest trails in Arkansas since they are short, but they are definitely among the steepest. (Check out Mike’s elevation profile below.) In fact, guidebook writer Tim Ernst says that the East Summit Trail is the steepest trail in the state.

The elevation change from the base to the summit of Pinnacle Mountain is about 725 feet.

There is a trailhead at the base of the west side (West Summit Trail) and one at the east side (East Summit Trail). They both have parking.

The Base Trail makes a relatively level loop around the bottom of the mountain going through both trailheads.

When I recently hiked this loop, I began at the West Summit Trail trailhead and turned left onto the Base Trail. From there I hiked around the base of the mountain to the East Summit Trail. I then climbed East Summit Trail (not easily!) to the summit, and I hiked down back to my car via the West Summit Trail.

Pinnacle Mountain: Summit Trail Loop - 3 mi photo
West-facing view looking toward Lake Maumelle from the Pinnacle Mountain summit.

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Pinnacle Mountain: Rocky Valley/East Quarry Trails – 3 mi

Pinnacle Mountain: Rocky Valley/East Quarry Trails – 3 mi photo
Panoramic west-facing view from the H.L. Dickinson Overlook on the East Quarry Trail at Pinnacle Mountain State Park. Pinnacle Mountain is in the center. The swollen Maumelle and Arkansas Rivers are to the right.

This short but vigorous 2.6-mile hike combines two trails at Pinnacle Mountain State Park (Pulaski County, near Little Rock): the Rocky Valley and East Quarry Trails.

This is a scenic and hilly walk with a couple of great vistas on the east end.

Getting to the Rocky Valley Trail

The first part of the hike is the Rocky Valley Trail (green blazes), a semi-loop trail that starts next to the visitor center. The East Quarry Trail (red blazes) is a spur at the east end of the loop.

Pinnacle Mountain: Rocky Valley/East Quarry Trails – 3 mi photo
One of the cool rock formations on the Rocky Valley trail.

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Pinnacle Mountain: West Summit Trail Pics 2014

Pinnacle Mountain: West Summit Trail Pics 2014 photo
Climbing up the West Summit Trail, Pinnacle Mountain State Park. Follow the yellow blazes.

About a month ago during the holidays, my brother and I did a hike up the West Summit Trail at Pinnacle Mountain State Park (Pulaski County, near Little Rock). This is an awesome trail.

There are two trails that will get you to the top of Pinnacle Mountain: the East Summit Trail and the West Summit Trail. The West Summit Trail is the most travelled, but the East Summit Trail is pretty popular too.

The net elevation change either way is about 650 feet.

The upper halves of both trails are quite steep, but the East Summit Trail is much more so. The upper part of the West Summit Trail is like a very steep crooked rock  staircase. On the East Summit Trail, the trail is just scaling boulders. (Check out some pictures, maps, and elevation profile in this Summit Trail Loop post.)

Pinnacle Mountain: West Summit Trail Pics 2014 photo
Southwest facing view from the upper parts of the West Summit Trail.

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Pinnacle Mountain: Base Trail – 3 mi

Pinnacle Mountain: Base Trail - 3 mi photo
Base Trail, north side

One of the cool hiking trails at Pinnacle Mountain State Park is the Base Trail, a 2.7-mile loop around the base of Pinnacle Mountain.

Hikers often use either the north or south part of the Base Trail to make a summit loop — e.g., hiking up the East Summit Trail, down the West Summit Trail, then turning right to complete the loop on the north part of the Base Trail.

But just hiking the Base Trail a pretty cool hike.

Pinnacle Mountain: Base Trail - 3 mi photo
Panoramic shot of the Base Trail, on the north side, Pinnacle Mountain State Park

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