Dead Chief Trail is a 2.7 mile moderately trafficked out and back trail located near Hot Springs National Park, Arkansas that features beautiful wild flowers and is rated as moderate. The trail offers a number of activity options and is accessible year-round. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.
dogs on leash
Directions from Hot Springs: Start from behind the Fordyce Bathhouse Visitor Center at the Grand Promenade.
Prescribed burns going on have closed the dead chief trail and what I think is the peak trail(?). Other trails are likely closed too for a few day. Even if you could access these trails the air quality is not good. This town is rich in history and sights but I was really here for the hiking.
If you start at the Fordyce Bathhouse Visitor Center it is a rather steep climb up to where the Short Cut Trail ties into the Dead Chief Trail. From there, the Dead Chief is a nice easy hike to the Gulpha Gorge Trail. At that point you can either go down to the Gulpha Gorge Campground, up to the Mountain Top Trail, or turn around and head back to the visitor center. Nice hike on a well marked and up kept trail.
This trail is rather steep, but it's really short and works well as a shortcut up to the observation tower at the peak. I'd use it again.
Trail was good, thought it would be a little more difficult. We're some very nice views from some ridges.
Ok, but not labeled well.