Redding/Spy Rock Loop Trail is a 8.3 mile lightly trafficked loop trail located near Ozark, Arkansas that features a waterfall and is rated as difficult. 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
Trailhead is located on the NE corner of the Redding campground.
Good early season hike to get back into backpacking shape! It should be only be rated moderate, with some elevation gain and rocky stretches. Blue blazes on the trail could use some repairs, but the trail was always easy to find with good signage. Water was abundant all along the trail except for the Spy Rock section. Spring was just starting to hit the higher elevations, with some dogwood flowering and the trees just leafing out. It seems like they recently did a prescribed burn here, as the understory vegetation was very sparse.
I paid $3 and parked in the Redding campsite overnight, although I'm sure parking in the Spy Rock parking area would have been fine. Even though the Redding campsite looked full, I saw no one else on the trail both days. I took the east loop and camped at the second waterfall. There was very little flat ground, but it worked. Be warned, there is a lot of ATV noise along the east loop at night.
I went up to Spy Rock the next day, which was less elevation gain than I expected. I found a smoldering fire at the top--shame on the campers who stayed there the night before! I put it out with the extra water I brought with me. The view from the top was well worth the hike!
The west loop was all downhill and very easy but not very interesting.
This was my second visit, this time with the dog. We are now both big fans of this trail. The views are incredible, and both waterfalls were flowing a little. This trial is easy to find and follow, and, while it's rated "hard," it's really somewhere between "easy" and "moderate."
lots of rocks on the east loop
Pretty hike the whole time! We did the west loop first and it was pretty easy. On the east loop there were two waterfalls that would've been flowing really well after a good rain. We backpacked it and stayed the night at spy rock. Absolutely gorgeous view!! You could definitely make it a day trip, but I would recommend camping and exploring at spy rock!
My wife and I hiked the trail today. Parked at the campground and paid to park $3 day use honor system. Ate at the Oark Cafe first. Awesome breakfast to start the day off right. Just FYI here if you plan on going over to spy rock, the loop including spy rock is a total of 9 miles. Lots of rocks in the trail waiting to twist you ankle so be sure footed. Trecking poles are awesome to help with this. Have a great time.
If you follow Ernst's suggestion, and start your hike from the campground, know three things: 1. There is a $3 day-use fee (I had to pay in charge from my car's cup holder!) it's on the honor system; 2. The trailhead is directly across from the restrooms. If I'd not stopped to ask the ranger where the trail started, I would have found it that way, but 3. you can also walk out on the road you came in on, cross the highway, and start the hike there (West Loop), which was his suggestion, and the way I went.
Beautiful trail, and certainly not difficult. At this time of year, the path is often obscured by a thick carpet of leaves, but the frequent blue blazes will keep you on track. There's signage at all major points, and you shouldn't have any trouble getting out and back. The view from Spy Rock was incredible today, and there will be more amazing views during the winter. Both waterfalls were dry, but judging by other blogs and the pics here, they are worth making a trip back for.
Take the quick-ish drive to the Oark General Store in Ozone! It's the longest continually operating store around, and they serve a very nice BLT, as well as an array of gorgeous house-made pies. The staff makes you feel welcome; it's a great place to fuel up after your hike.
Great trail. This is not a hard trail! Easy to moderate at best. High point was waking up to the view off spy rock!
Fun hike, with amazing views. Would love to go back and camp.
I did the loop, spent at least an hour at spy rock and never saw another person.
It is nice camping site. Has one power camp site and others has none. $10 fee. Whoever has access pass can get $5 each day. Nice showers. I came there for shower, i camp east of Oark. Also i go off road driving in mountain.