Tag - Trail Profile

Trail profiles with photos and info about Arkansas and East Oklahoma trails.

Cecil Cove Trail Loop (Buffalo River) – 6 mi

Cecil Cove Trail Loop (Buffalo River) - 6 mi photo
Blue pool near Van Dyke Spring

The former community of Erbie (north Newton County, Buffalo National River) offers a variety of hiking trails that can be combined for larger or shorter loops. Because it was a community, many of the trails feature historical sites that tell a story of early settlers to the area.

The 6.4-mile Cecil Cove Trail Loop, much of which follows Cecil Creek, is one of these. It provides a wonderful assortment of spring-fed ponds, streams, historic stone walls, a historic cemetery, former home sites, and a spur trail that leads to a couple of awesome waterfalls.

This is a full day of nature and historic sites that is well worth the trip. The trail is also shared by horses.

The elevation change on the hike is about 850 feet

Cecil Cove Trail Loop (Buffalo River) - 6 mi photo
Cecil Cove Loop Trail – part of the trail follows an old road bed

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Devil’s Den Self-Guided Trail + Twin Falls – 1 mi

Devil's Den Self-Guided Trail + Twin Falls - 1 mi photo
Twin Falls on the Devil’s Den Self-Guided Trail

The Devil’s Den Self-Guided Trail (Devil’s Den State Park, southern Washington County, Ark.) is one of the coolest state park trails in Arkansas. The rock formations and the seasonal waterfall on this short trail are wonderful.

It’s not a difficult trail. It’s about 1.2 miles long, and there’s not much of an elevation change (about 100 feet).

(At present, the namesake Devil’s Den Cave is closed to the public due to white-nose syndrome.)

Devil's Den Self-Guided Trail + Twin Falls - 1 mi photo
Crevices on the Devil’s Den Self-Guided Trail. The trail is just over to the right.

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Hunt’s Loop Trail (Ouachita Forest) – 4 mi

Hunt’s Loop Trail (Ouachita Forest) - 4 mi photo
The view from the Short Mountain vista.

One of my favorite day hikes around Hot Springs is the Hunt’s Loop Trail in the Ouachita National Forest (north Garland County/south Perry County).

The 4.3-mile-hike takes you straight up Short Mountain to a gorgeous vista and then through some of the most beautiful woods along the ridge of the mountain before returning to the narrow valley of the Middle Fork of the Saline River.

It is a moderate trail overall. The only difficult part is at the beginning (going clockwise) up Short Mountain. The elevation change is about 500 feet.

Hunt’s Loop Trail (Ouachita Forest) - 4 mi photo
Heading north on Hunt’s Loop Trail on top of Short Mountain, Ouachita National Forest
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Alum Cove Natural Bridge Trail (Ozark Forest) – 1 mi

Alum Cove Natural Bridge Trail (Ozark Forest) - 1 mi photo
The Natural Bridge at Alum Cove from below

The Alum Cove Natural Bridge Trail (near Deer, Newton County, Arkansas, Ozark National Forest) is a relatively short  1.2-mile hike that provides a lot of great features including a couple of waterfalls, a cave, a small stream, and the highlight, the Alum Cove Natural Bridge.

This is a family-friendly destination with a lot of bang for your hiking effort.

I first hiked Alum Cove several years ago, and the area was not in great condition due to some winter storm damage at the time.

At our recent visit in May 2016, it was in much better condition.

Alum Cove Natural Bridge Trail (Ozark Forest) - 1 mi photo
The top of the Natural Bridge

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