backpacking
2 months ago

camping
3 months ago

Great place for a day hike. Came in during the evening, there is a place to set up camp right at the base of the trail, of about 20 min up the trail. There are two more camp sites, one about halfway in, the other at the very end. Lots of creeks to cross, your feet will definitely get wet at some point! One point to note, it got REALLY cold a couple nights ago. Much to be expected when sleeping in between mountains even in the spring!

backpacking
4 months ago

I would consider the Caney Creek Trail an easy end to tend hike. There is plenty of water, a few hills on the East side and lots of great scenery.

The West side (from Katy Falls west) is not well traveled. There are many trees down and one must look for the trail at times. It is not hard to navigate, but someone needs to pay attention in spots. Also, there are only a few campsites visible from the trail on this side.

We loved all the water crossings on the Western side. Nothing and I wore my Tevas for the last three miles or so.

This was a good trip and had something for all of us.

backpacking
6 months ago

backpacking
8 months ago

My girlfriend and I completed this trail on a clear weekend in November. We did this trail after hiking the 5.6 mile Buckeye Trail the day before and camping at Katy Falls. The spur trail for the falls is only about .10 of a mile north of the Buckeye/Caney Creek Trail junction. If you are considering hiking this trail I HIGHLY recommend reading the narrative on ouachitamaps.com and bringing a map of course. The trail doesn't have mile markers or signs like other trails but is well worn. There aren't many great views on this trail but the Buckeye Trail we did the day before offered beautiful views. Viewing Katy Falls makes the hike worth it though. We had to cross Caney Creek several times on this trail but the water wasn't very high and we were able to cross on the rocks. This trail is also not very difficult as long as you are in decent shape.

one of my favs.

backpacking
9 months ago

It was a nice trail easy going.

backpacking
10 months ago

This trail was great. The elevation was not too hard for a nice stroll through the forest. In a few more weeks the fall colors here will be extravagant. I don't want to take anything away from this trail because it was exciting, however, I give this trail three stars because it is poorly marked. The trail is great, but gives a visitor no instructions. It does not give any details about the trail or joining trails. After I finished hiking East Caney Creek trail, I found the forest service sign saying that it was the buckeye trail, while at the road it says it was the East Caney Creek. I was then totally confused, So after further research to figure out which trail I had hiked, I realize that this was a combination of trails. I am surprised that I did not get lost. We took this trail to see the waterfall but could not find it, because I did not research it up front and the trail has no information when you get there or phone signal. Hopefully, you read all the comments on here and plan from there. Lesson learned, now I want to go back and do the whole thing.

backpacking
10 months ago

Clearest creek water I have ever seen. Love this trail late Oct thru Feb. Great for shakedowns and newbies or just to get away for a day or two.

Sunday, June 12, 2016

hiking
Sunday, January 31, 2016

hiking
Thursday, January 28, 2016

Great little trail. Enjoyed the overlooks and little stream crossings.

camping
Friday, January 22, 2016

More difficult than I thought, well marked though.

hiking
Friday, November 06, 2015

Just got back from the East Caney Creek / Buckeye Loop trails this week. Great hike! Took two days. You have to drive almost 5 miles on an uphill dirt road to get to the trail from the Shady Lake campground. I made it in midsize car but it was bumpy. OuachitaMaps.com suggests dropping your pack at the Buckeye TH and then parking down at East Caney Creek, then hiking up to Buckeye without the pack, picking it up there and heading counter-clockwise around the loop so you hit Buckeye first and take it easy on E Caney Creek on day two. Not a bad idea, but make sure you actually hike up the actual road to get to the Buckeye TH -- it’s a about a mile on the dirt road – I got a late start at 2pm because I got lost in my car finding the darn Shady Lake entrance, then didn’t realize I still had 5 miles of dirt road ahead of me from there to the TH … pay attention to “unpaved road” on the map. I didn’t feel safe leaving my pack at the Buckeye TH (in case that wasn’t actually the TH, since it wasn’t labeled), so I parked at E Caney Creek and shot off down the trail in front of me instead of going up the road. An hour later I was wondering why I wasn’t going uphill and I still saw the creek – I was so anxious to get going, I had set off clockwise west, instead of the generally suggested counterclockwise route, and was hiking the E Caney Trail instead. Shockingly stupid, I know. Just as well since it was late; I never would have made it to camp going Buckeye first. E Caney Creek trail was relatively fast and moderate difficulty; lots of peace and beauty, and though it had rained a few days earlier, I never had to take my boots off to make any of the creek crossings. This may be basic info, but pay attention to the sunset times, because in the forest, when sunset is at 5pm, you need to be at camp with your tent set up or in process; it gets too dark to see within the hour. This E Caney Creek trail is a little sketchy to locate on occasion but I never lost it. I did refer to a compass and map to verify generally that I was heading west. Camped at the vertex of E Caney Creek and another inlet, it’s the biggest campsite I saw with firepit at the end of E Caney Creek trail, beautiful spot with the two creeks and running water. Set out on day two with an easy cross over E Caney Creek and literally less than fifty feet later is the Caney Creek/Buckeye TH rock cairn – as others say, don’t miss it or you’ll be heading down W Caney Creek trail. I loaded a few pics on AllTrails. Hook a very sharp right here and then to the right less than a few steps later is the Katy Falls spur – go see it, it’s a highlight. Leave your pack at the top of the hill to scramble down to the bottom of the falls; gloves were useful for me. You could also camp above the falls which would be a great spot; there’s another fire pit. Now comes the “strenuous” part of the trail – the mountain region – head back to the main Buckeye trail and go right – there’s a sort of little four-foot path of rocks laid out to mark it. Watch out for spiders who like to build webs directly across the trails in the mornings, I guess to catch hikers, but those spiders are big ole forest spiders, not something you want on your head. I saw them generally a few feet before I’d hit the web, and knock it out of the way with my pole. Also there’s a lot of thorny vines along the way but if you have long pants you’ll be fine. The Buckeye trail could use some upkeep from this point to the main Buckeye vista. There were three or four points when I seriously thought I’d lost the trail – it just went into a thicket and then nothing – but in every case it turned out to be doing something weird like whipping around in a u-turn behind me and I’d look around and find it again. In these cases, I found that anytime I had to walk farther away from a point of reference than I could return to, I’d gone too far, and the trail was actually behind me doing a sharp turn over the ridge or something unexpected. The trail is there and it’s obvious when you’re on it, but I had to keep my eyes on it frequently for fear of losing it – not a good thing on a solo hike seven miles into the wilderness. There are essentially no marking on trees along this loop anywhere, though it looks like someone made the attempt here and there. Also be aware that hiking uphill for this section is significantly slower and harder than the E Caney Creek portion – which is why most people like doing it counterclockwise, Buckeye first. It took me from 2pm to 5pm on E Caney Creek; Buckeye took me from 11am to 6pm officially back to my car. I go slow and stop and take photos a lot however. The vistas along Buckeye are great when you get to them, but from E Caney Creek to the mountain ridges is the hardest part of this loop – the trail is uphill, it gets very rocky, and very tenuous at points, it’s not kept up all that well compared to most trails; one time I thought (continued)

hiking
Friday, November 06, 2015

(continued) I would have to turn back and go all the way back to E Caney Creek because the trail appeared to dead-end in a thicket on the ridge – again though the trail ended up looping backwards and over the other side of the ridge. I was worn out by the time I made it to the Buckeye vista – and note that from the Buckeye main vista all the way to the Buckeye TH, the trail suddenly becomes a different and easier experience altogether, because obviously a lot of people simply hike from the Buckeye TH to the vista and back down – so if you start at the Buckeye TH, and hike to that first vista, you will be severely deceived about the remainder of what you are getting into if you are planning to get to E Caney Creek from there! It’s TWO DIFFERENT types of trail completely. My grandma could hike that first portion with a good walking stick; but beyond that, it’s Into The Wild. The biggest thing to know is that all the campsites have firepits, so you can tell easily when you’ve found one; and also the trail is there, and sometimes you just have to scout for it if you lose it, but you should never have to go farther from your reference point than you can get back to – if you feel that happening, you’ve gone too far, go back and try again, look elsewhere, look behind you, etc., and don’t ever start walking through brush thinking you’ll find the trail that way, because the trail is always within a few steps of where you are, and very obvious when you’ve found it, compared to dense thickets or what-have-you. There’s a good site below that I printed out and took with me on the trail and it helped; print this and other reviews and pics and anything else you can find and take that with you along with a good map and compass for sure. Reference other people’s comments for direction, suggestions etc. as you go. I put some pics of the Buckeye TH and the rock cairn and some other notables. Good luck, it’s a challenging two-day hike and it feels great to knock it out! Here's some other links: http://arkokhiker.org/southwest-arkansas/buckeye-east-caney-creek-trail/ -- http://compulsivehiker.com/2014/05/02/buckeye-caney-creek-loop/ -- http://www.ouachitamaps.com/Buckeye.html

Friday, March 06, 2015

This was a great trail we actually tried to do the Buckeye trail and miss the turn make sure if you are doing that trail return is literally a 90 degrees if you do the canyon Creek Trail after the Buckeye trail from west to east there is a lot of fallen trees and sometimes it is hard to find the trail after you cross a river they are marked with a yellow mark on trees

Saturday, June 07, 2014

Very neat trail with lots of wildflowers. The irises in the Spring are excellent. There are many good camp spots, and the creek crossings are very peaceful and pretty. Be sure to take the right path where Caney Creek trail meets Buckeye Mountain trail, and at least take a glance at the nearby Katy Falls. This is a great campsite.