hiking

dogs on leash

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forest

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wildlife

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kid friendly

trail running

Arkansas's largest state park in land area, Hobbs State Park-Conservation Area (HSPCA) covers 12,055 acres along the southern shores of 28,370-acre Beaver Lake. Twenty-two of the parks 60 miles of border stretch along the shores of Beaver Lake. The park lies between Beaver Lake to the north and War Eagle Creek to the south. It stretches across a part of Benton County southeast of Beaver Lake and extends into Madison and Carroll counties. This large tract of Ozark landscape consists of plateaus, ridges, valleys, and streams featuring an upland forest of pine, oak and hickory. Many water features including disappearing streams, springs and seeps have carved the many hollows in this fragile limestone landscape, as well as created cave-related features including numerous sinkholes. HSPCA is managed jointly by Arkansas State Parks, the Arkansas Natural Heritage Commission, and the Arkansas Game and Fish Commission. The park is 10 miles east of Rogers on Ark. 12, which bisects the park property. The park's 17,531-square-foot visitor center opened on May 27, 2009. This $4.5 million, state-of-the-art facility features Ozark focused exhibits including interactive kiosks, classroom space, a retail sales area, and the park's administrative offices. Wi-Fi wireless Internet access is provided in the visitor center. The center is on Ark. Hwy. 12 near the junction with War Eagle Road. To read more about this facility, visit our news release. The park includes a wide variety of trails. The Historic Van Winkle Trail is a one-and-one half-mile trail that leads hikers through a tunnel under Ark. 12 to the site of the historic Van Winkle lumber mill and home in Van Winkle Hollow on the West Fork of Little Clifty Creek. Here hikers can see the remnants of a sawmill and an antebellum garden owned by Peter Van Winkle during the 19th century. Beginning in the 1840s and continuing throughout his life, Van Winkle acquired approximately 17,000 acres of land throughout Washington, Benton, Madison, and Carroll counties by filing for land patents and purchasing foreclosed land. The tunnel and associated walkways were designed to provide barrier-free access to the historic site. Wayside interpretive panels along the trail provide hikers with information about this historic area. The trailhead features a parking lot large enough to accommodate two school buses or recreational vehicles and 18 automobiles. Water fountains and a composting toilet are located adjacent to the parking area. The Pigeon Roost Trail is a double-stacked loop trail, in a figure eight formation, featuring a short loop of approximately four miles for day hiking and a longer loop of eight and one half miles for overnight use. This moderately difficult trail is excellent for beginners, scouts and families looking for adventure and scenery without having to travel a great distance. Campsites are marked with signs and each has a tent pad and fire ring. The trailhead and its associated parking area are located on Hwy. 12. The trail passes several sinkholes and some portions follow ridges overlooking Beaver Lake. Some of the primitive campsites on the trail offer views of the lake, especially in winter when leaves are off the trees in the surrounding Ozark oak/hickory/pine forest. Wild turkey, whitetail deer and other wildlife are commonly seen along the trail. The 21-mile Multi-use Hidden Diversity Trail is designed for equestrians, mountain bikers and hikers. No motorized vehicles are allowed. Users have the option of four trail sections or loops. The trail follows ridge tops and rims with lots of curves and a few hills that drop 200 to 300 feet in elevation. The entire trail is surrounded by woods that are mainly comprised of oak and hickory. When weather conditions warrant, the trail is subject to closure to mountain bike and equestrian use. In addition, all or a portion of the parks trail system may be closed occasionally for permitted hunting seasons or maintenance repair. Contact the park to check on the current trail status before traveling to Hobbs to participate in these activities. The one-and-one-half-mile Shaddox Hollow Nature Trail can be accessed from its trailhead parking lot located on Ark. 303, approximately one mile from the intersection on the north side of Ark. 12. The first one-half mile of this loop trail follows a ridgeline, providing an easy hike. The trail then descends into Shaddox Hollow. The descent is rather steep in places. This trail winds along the creek through stands of hardwoods and other native Ozark vegetation. Interesting limestone bluffs are found along this section. After progressing up the creek, the trail begins the ascent back to the trailhead. This climb can be strenuous in places. The park includes the only public, outdoor shooting range in Arkansas with a bullet trap (open Tuesday through Sunday). NOTE: The shooting range is closed every Monday throughout the year for maintenance and repair. In addition, the park offers regulated seasonal hunting; undeveloped access to 28,370-acre Beaver Lake; and interpretive programs. HSPCA is Arkansas's only state park where hunting is allowed. Future development and expanded visitor programs at the HSPCA will include cabins, pavilions, picnic areas, additional hiking trails, and archery and orienteering courses.

I saw an old indian trail marker tree on the Townsend Ridge portion of the trail near the War Eagle/Little Clifty junction.

hiking
3 days ago

Saw 3 of the 4 Indian trail marker trees.

backpacking
4 days ago

Great and historic trail for a short easy hike. Good for families with kids too.

hiking
17 days ago

We absolutely loved it! I had my 3 kiddos (7, 4, & 1) plus our little dog. We had a blast! The water on the lake was down super low so the kids were able to walk around & see all the cool stuff that's typically under water. We will definitely be back to hike this one!

hiking
17 days ago

We absolutely loved it! I had my 3 kiddos (7, 4, & 1) plus our little dog. We had a blast! The water on the lake was down super low so the kids were able to walk around & see all the cool stuff that's typically under water. We will definitely be back to hike this one!

hiking
17 days ago

We absolutely loved it! I had my 3 kiddos (7, 4, & 1) plus our little dog. We had a blast! The water on the lake was down super low so the kids were able to walk around & see all the cool stuff that's typically under water. We will definitely be back to hike this one!

Great rolling terrain in Arkansas woods.
Easy XC MTBing but fast and fun for experienced riders. No jumps or obstacles.

hiking
23 days ago

Easy hiking trail with an impressive overlook of the lake at the end.

hiking
29 days ago

Trail is well marked and easy to follow. You are rewarded with beautiful views of the lake.

1 month ago

Parts of this trail are a little steep but overall a good trail to hike.

My wife, her two siblings, and I just completed the trail this morning. We stayed 1 night at campsite 5. Just a heads up, make sure you start early if you're camping. Campsites are first come first serve and this weekend all the sites were taken. All sites have tent pads and fire rings so that's a plus! The white trail maps at the sign in/bulletin board have a description of each site so you can pick based on that. Also don't be a dingus and decide to blaze your own path to the lake for water from camps 3-5. Following the main trail going clockwise will take you right down to a spot where it is pretty easy to get water. I, on the other hand, got to climb back up a nice steep 60 degree incline with my 5 gallon collapsible jug. Anyway onto the trail itself. It's of course 8.4 miles around the longer Huckleberry Loop and 4.2 around the Dry Creek Loop. Heading clockwise around you meet just one relatively steep incline before camp close after the first fork. Other inclines are either very gradual or short in length. Once past camp, there will be a series of 3 inclines going up the side of a hill then down on its opposite side for 3 hills. None of the inclines are really too harsh throughout. Some beginners may feel a good burn the last 0.7 miles back to the trailhead. Also, if you do decide to go counter-clockwise, you can expect to feel the burn at the first long incline you meet. So I would suggest going clockwise to avoid that major uphill. For the most part though, the trail is pretty flat. This was the second backpacking trip for my wife and I, and the first for my in-laws. I believe it to be a great hike for beginners. As far as the views go, the north side of the trail goes through forest along the side of multiple hills and sometimes coming to the top of them. Once you get to camp and onward you will see many more views of the lake, including a really beautiful view with benches about 1.2 miles from the trailhead. Also some pretty cool sinkholes are just under a mile past campsite 5. It was a great hike and I plan on doing it again!