Eagle Rock Loop is a 25.2 mile lightly trafficked loop trail located near Caddo Gap, Arkansas that features a waterfall and is only recommended for very experienced adventurers. The trail is primarily used for hiking, camping, fishing, and backpacking and is accessible year-round. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.
dogs on leash
Directions from Glenwood area: There are 5 trailheads. (1.) Albert Pike Recreation Area off Highway 369. ( 2.) Little Missouri Falls on Forest Road 25. (3.) 4 miles west of Little Missouri Falls on Forest Road 25. (4. &5.) east of Bard Springs Recreation Area on Forest Road 106.
I've hiked this loop in both directions. Amazing trail with great views. I would suggest starting at Albert's pike and going clockwise toward viles branch first. You'll hit the easy trail first then Athens-Big Fork the hard way. And you'll finish coming down via Little Missouri. Just my preference though, some like to go counter-clockwise.
This is one of the best trails I've been on in a few years! My 8 year old son loved every minute of it.
Just completed this trail yesterday with my daughter and a friend with her daughter. We hiked clockwise from the parking lot near Albert Pike Rec Area that is in the direction of the Winding Stair taking 3 days, 2 nights. We were all glad we hiked clockwise after it was over as the ridges seemed manageable going that direction... but who knows really, since we didn't go the other way? We had A LOT of water crossings, and each one of us managed to fall in at some point. The water was up, the gauge at Langley was right at 4 feet, so we probably had more wet crossings than usual. That was not a problem though, just ate up some time. The trail is loaded with camp sites and we had no issue finding a great site each night even thought there were many people on the trail. We camped just below Eagle Rock Vista next to a creek the 1st night and about .5 miles past Little Missouri Falls the 2nd. Both with great water and fire pits. Not gonna lie, the hardest part for me were the ridges. Some of them are very steep. Just be patient and take a breather if you need it and you will be fine. A few sections of the trail are rocky and very narrow so just watch where you put your feet. And take some time to look at the stunning scenery! It's gorgeous every step of the way on this trail and if you do a forced march you will miss everything you came out to see on the great trail.
Did a 14 mile out and back with my wife and daughter on the Athens Big Fork section from the southern trailhead over 2 days. Great weather during the day, but had a cold and rainy night. Trail was quite full with spring breakers. Did the entire loop 2 years ago and saw 5 people, saw at least 50 on this short section hike. Trail was in great condition and well maintained. Had a great time. Will definitely come back for a longer trip later in the spring.
Fantastic trail make sure u are in shape to do the 7 ridges of 4000 ft plus elevation... Beautiful trail but mountain area is not very well maintained. If u keep a steady pace and are in good shape it can be done in 2 full days but ideally 3 days and I lot of good chillin in the water holes would be ideal... Water socks and keeping it food secure from the creatures is a must... Loved this trail and would definitely visit again to catch the things I missed...
Just finished this yesterday. Not for the faint of heart. Or those not in shape. There some very steep mountains and numerous (10+) water crossings where you won't be able to cross in boots or by rock hopping when the water is up even a little as it is now. Would be much prettier in the spring or autumn but even this time of year it's still gorgeous. Did it in 3 days. If you plan on stopping often to fish or sight see (there are a few side trails with killer views on the tops of each of the mountains that I highly recommend dropping your packs and trekking to. Each one is short but very steep so best without all your gear except some water and a camera) then I recommend breaking it up into 5-7 mile stints over 4 days. Highly recommended trail if you're fit enough to make it and love fishing, hiking, and the gorgeous views of Arkansas.
Went with my two good buddies from a Saturday- Monday. It was a blast! Beautiful scenery and plenty of camping sites. What a great hike!
Did this trail in mid July. It was a great time; temperature was almost perfect (could've been a little colder). The north-eastern section of the trail is definitely the hardest (lots of hills), but if you plan your trip to do half the hills in one day, and the other half the next day, it'll be much more manageable. There are tons of super scenic spots on this trail, and plenty of spots to refill water (if it has rained in the past couple weeks). Crossing the little Missouri could be tough if the water levels are high so plan accordingly. Overall, great trip that I plan on doing again.
Outstanding trail and so beautiful! I started at Little Missouri Falls overflow parking lot because the trail is right in front of you. There were 3 river crossings and it could have been 5 where water shoes are required and there are several other stream crossings as well. My trail runners were damp half of the time. Traveling counter-clockwise, I camped on the straight part of the trail just past Eagle Rock Summit the first night. I fell just 3 miles short of completing my hike the second day, but landed at an incredible campsite to enjoy my last night. Starting from where I did was perfect because you get through the big ups and downs while your fresh. The final one:, Brush Heap Mountain is a real doozy!
It was a great experience with this trail. As soon as reviewed this Nov 2016, I made up my mind to do backpacking Dec 17, 2016. I went ccw starting from WS parking. Even though blazes were helpful, I got confused twice around little missouri falls. While gage height was around 2ft, i had to cross wet three times. Because of my miscalculation, I had to sleep in hammock on the top of eagle rock vista at 18F lol. It was a really challenging trail, but I enjoyed and will come back again Jan 2017 with my sons.
Wow, such an incredible trail. We went clockwise around the trail starting in the Northwestern corner. The trail is full of streams and water crossings. I only had to cross wet twice. Blazes are plentiful, just make sure you pay attention it's easy to get off trail on accident. We hiked the hard mountainous section last. Do not underestimate the difficulty of it. There are at least 5 significant climbs, we are both in good shape and had to take numerous breaks. Next time I may do the trail counterclockwise to knock out the hard part on day one. The rest of the trail is a breeze.