Explore the most popular Bird Watching trails in Ozark National Forest with hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

off trail
2 days ago

This trail does offer some really nice views around Lake Wedington. There are lots of downed trees and trails are not very well marked. Most disappointing today was the amount of dog poop! It was everywhere! Watch where you walk on this one, folks - there seems to be a lot of inconsiderate dogs out there, leaving nasty surprises. You'd think their human companions would be a little more aware of where these deposits are being made.

Great place to go! Spend a lot of time here!

absolutely loved this trail! go to my Facebook to see a bunch of pictures imposted today!

This trail is so much more than just the large fall! The rock formations, overlooks, creek, and tranquility makes this one of my favorite trails thus far. The length of the trail may be varied. We followed the creek for quite a distance then scrambled the rocks the reconnect with the trail. There are pink markers along the main trail and that was very helpful. This is a must experience trail!!

Thru-hiked it from Crippled Turkey Creek to Alison with my fiancé. We had an amazing time. The trail is moderate to borderline hard with a full pack. We primitive camped two nights. The first night near Cole Fork Road. The second night just past Blanchard Springs Campground. There is a nice spot to camp probably less then a half mile in. The trail is well blazed and easy to follow. The views and the bluffs on this trail are spectacular! We hike a lot of different places and this one will not disappoint! The sheer amount of massive bluffs and shelter caves is impressive. If you like hiking in Arkansas this is one you have to put on the list.

Pretty easy trail even on the way back out and up. Nice views of the valley below and great photo opportunity on the rock if you're brave enough.

So I've been hiking this trail for a couple years now (I'm a local in the area of the trail) and it's definitely one of my favorites. At times, the climb is steep and slightly dangerous, offering a small amount of challenge to anybody moderately experienced. I will say that during the summer it's practically not hikeable unless you want chiggers in your socks and your whole body covered in spiderwebs. A lot of the trial doesn't have much to see, but when when you start nearing the top of the plateau, especially in the late fall or winter, the view is incredible. I always take some time to sit on the bluff at the top and enjoy the view.

We day-hiked from Allison to Blanchard Springs Trailhead (about 5 miles) and the next day from Blanchard to Barkshed Recreation Area (almost 9 miles). The trail is well marked with blue, metal, rectangles and the trail tread is well established and at no time did we get lost. Sylamore Creek is a beautiful stream and there are many opportunities to walk along and under bluffs. The trail passes through areas of tall grasses, river cane, cedar groves on rock outcrops, deciduous forest, and creek side. I was disappointed that there were few vistas established when there were so many opportunities. If winter hiking the segment from Allison to Blanchard, start at Blanchard and hike to Allison. You must wade Sylamore Creek near Allison where you WILL get wet but will only be a few hundred yards from your vehicle. This is a late Fall - Winter - early Spring hike like most Arkansas trails. During leaf-ON you will be in a tree tunnel most of the time. Blanchard Springs Caverns, operated by the U.S. Forest Service, is located here. A must-see cave if you have the time. I rated the trail a 4 star simply because I prefer more vistas when you have such beautiful country- otherwise it is a 5.

This is a great day hike! Took about 4 hours with a lunch stop at Spy Rock, which has excellent views. Trail is well marked and easy to follow. Took the west side up and the east side back. West side has nice leaf off views. East side has two waterfalls.

10 days ago

Short, easy trail. Pretty views of the water. Waterfalls were nice. Clean looking campgrounds with bathrooms. $3 for parking in the day use area.

Great trail, hiked the Barkshed to Gunner’s pool segment with group of about 15 OHTA hikers. Beautiful hike, nicely maintained trail.

Awesome, beautiful trail!

11 days ago

Great short trail with fabulous views. Perfect for sunrise and sunset on the right side of the mountain top.

Beautiful views. Consider bringing a rope if you want to get up to Sam's Throne. Also amazing to walk around bluffs to service road up to North bluffs to be able to look back at Sam's Throne from across the canyon.

Pretty trail. Trees grown up, so a little hard to see rock formations in some spots. Still a fine hike.

Really loved this trail and so did my hiking pal, Bear, my Morkie. It made our whole trip. Road up is a little steep and rough, but doable, even for my little Chevy. Mini waterfall and great views get better once you reach the waterfall and continue on. I also found a cool little rough green snake. Great people on the trail today. I will do this trail again when I make it back. Everyone should experience. The trail is beaten in pretty good, so it's hard to miss; however, I felt the actual trail could have been marked a little better, apart from the few random side trails people made. Unfortunately, some people left some trash behind in the lot. Remember to pack it in, pack it out. Monday morning hike, so parking wasn't terrible. Lot was full when I got back to vehicle though.

This is a great trail ( a little muddy in places and had a few steep places coming back out). The crag itself and the rock formation behind it or to the left of it made for some awesome picture taking. The views of the valley below and all of the fall colors (from the top of the crag) were amazing. This is a wonderful trail to cross off of your bucket list! Will do it again. My husband and I went on a sunny Tuesday and there were quite a few people on the trail. The road in (from the main highway) is straight up and pure hell! We were in a Toyota Tundra and I was scared! Lol! However, we saw small cars (Honda civic) up at the trailhead and a sign that showed another way to get to the trailhead. The trailhead had cars parked on both sides of the road. Don’t let the little foot path behind the Forestry signs/information placards fool you. The actual trail starts across the dirt road from the big signs. It is marked with a small little sign that says “trail”. A MUST DO at least once if you are ever in Ponca.

Fun trail. Pretty easy. Cool little waterfalls about halfway down off to the right. Worth hiking down to see the second set of falls. there is a trail that leads down. for some reason a lot of people were climbing down the rocks, that's totally unnecessary unless you want to. The view at the end was really nice.

It was amazing. Plan to go end of October for beautiful fall foliage

16 days ago

Awesome views along trail.

awesome easy trail with plenty to see

Amazing views! Perfect weather to hike in, the trail was easy to see and use. Trekking poles are recommended!

A decent place to hike. Good to try it once. Very crowded on a Saturday.

Absolutely worth my trip to see this! Breathtaking. I studied the reviews before going and it was true to what it said. Parking was hard, but manageable. Heavy traffic of hikers wanted to see this or take pictures. True to the 2 hour time. Hour in and hour out. Make sure you at least stop and enjoy the view! Look forward to my next trip there. *drove from 6 1/2 hours away to see this!

17 days ago

Amazing views every few feet! The trail was well kept and really easy to follow. There’s actually three trail options that you can cross cross between. Beautiful vista points on each trail. We brought my dog as she had no problem! Will be back for sure!

horseback riding
18 days ago

Took about 2 hours down and back. Great views, many of the leaves have already changed and fallen off from recent storm

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