Winthrop P. Rockefeller Boy Scout Trail

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Petit Jean State Park

Winthrop P. Rockefeller Boy Scout Trail is a 8.2 mile moderately trafficked loop trail located near Morrilton, Arkansas that features a lake 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.

Distance: 8.2 miles Elevation Gain: 1,128 feet Route Type: Loop

dogs on leash



nature trips


bird watching



partially paved




wild flowers


Boy Scout Trail is a loop that encompasses potions of most of the trails in the park, including the most scenic areas in the park: Rockhouse cave, grottos with waterfalls, cascades, towering bluffs with views, historic structures and much more.

1 month ago

This trail is great but is definitely more like 12 miles. My Fitbit logged 14 during a day hike. There’s a south loop that isn’t pictured on the trail map but it the route that makes the most sense when you’re doing the loop. I’m sure you could truck along the road for a little bit and keep it at 8 miles. Overall beautiful and well worth it. Just make sure you’re prepared for a long day.

2 months ago

Overall the trail was really good, but had some muddy spots that were somewhat avoidable if you walked along the edge. The actual state park map says it is 12 miles, but my recording only tracked it to be 8.5 miles on my health app on my phone and on this app as well. The map on here and paper map they give you at the park are identical though. It most likely won’t take you 8 hours unless you take a lot of breaks. It also has some pretty steep hiking uphill at some points.

2 months ago

The only thing that makes this hard is the length. Elevation changes but not too taxing. It takes in all the trails at the park, with the exception of the waterfall hike. Including Seven Hollows the mileage is 12.5. I like the piece from Rock House Cave to Blue Hole as it is rare to see other hikers but has great views of the canyon and then views of the Arkansas River Valley from the northwest brow.

3 months ago

New favorite trail. Starting from Mather Lodge you have the falls and the rocks and everything that goes with that. As you venture on you move away from Cedar Falls and into the forest, where it’s more peaceful and less trafficked. Weather was great, started off in the 30s and climbed into the lower 50s.

private property
6 months ago

This was one of my best trails so far! Lots to see, many interconnecting tails, the trail is 12 miles not 8.5. I do recommend bringing poles, plenty of fresh running water. Trail is well taken care of but do use caution on the rocks( slippery). Highly recommend especially in fall months to see the leaves changing colors.

Great trail. Some areas not marked well so watch your all trail map.

7 months ago

To be fair, I have arachnophobia and knocked off stars for the 3.5 miles of spiderwebs I had to fight through. Next time, I’ll bring a friend and make him or her go first! In early October, bugs were minimal - some gnats in a few places, and just a couple of mosquitoes (I didn’t wear bugspray, but didn’t get bitten). As other reviewers have suggested, wear proper footwear. No sandals. There were only a couple of places where I had to use my hands to climb, but you do go through several different terrains within the park. I was grateful for the cheap Walmart trekking poles I’d bought on the way...they came in very handy for keeping my balance in the rocky areas and helping to clear away the spiderwebs! Overall, it was a pretty area... but spiders, YUCK!!! *Update: CHIGGERS!!! Wear your bug spray.

8 months ago

If you start at the lodge and skip the Cedar Creek loop (with the connection to the trailhead) and the Seven Hollows loop, the resulting hike will be a 6.4 mile loop - another alternative to the 8 and 12 mile options. Nice hike with variety of terrains.

8 months ago

I loved this trail! I am a newbie and I had reservations about the length. It is well marked, and it is likely moderately intense for individual of average fitness. The alltrails app is awesome and accurate. When I veered off into different trails as they intersect (because I was not paying attention), I was able to quickly locate myself on the alltrails app and get back on my trail. As someone else had mentioned, bug spray, sunscreen, plenty of water, snacks and cell phone charger. I did not apply bug spray on my ears and face

Awesome hike! Would definitely recommend sunscreen, bug spray and an a portable charger for your phone. We hiked the 12 mile hike in 6 hours and loved it. Be prepared for spider webs and we came across a water moccasin near the blue hole. Also we did like it was recommended and hiked counterclockwise.

9 months ago

Water level is really low so you won’t get the same views as some of the pictures. Very nicely marked trail. It’s summertime so there’s some sections that are narrow with a lot of brush on either side but mostly very good. Rocky sections, so some decent footwear recommended. There is a 8 mile and 12 option if you take a loop out. Would recommend!

10 months ago

great trail but i took so many picture my battier died and yes i left my other at the hotel. i know i know, dumb ass! but at least i got some shots of the bridge and falls in the beginning, the man made lake and falls and stone pavilion.

Easily one of my favorite trails in central Arkansas.

Mon May 13 2019

This was one of the hardest trails I have done in a while. It is probably due to the fact that it was 8 miles long through mountainous terrain. The trail was interesting because it intersects at a lot of highlighted points along the other trails of the mountain. It took me about 4 hours to complete the tail.

Thu May 02 2019

We combined a few trails a month ago to make a loop and include all the must sees. Park near lodge. Boy Scout Trail (starting by the cabins near lodge) to the Cedar Falls Overlook. Continue counterclockwise on the BST across a bridge (here you can add on Cedar Creek for more miles if wanted, we didn’t) Don’t miss Rock House Cave and all the Turtle Rocks. After several miles of various terrain you will come to the Cedar Creek, before crossing creek to the left is Canyon Trail, follow that until it meets up with Cedar Falls Trail. Follow that out to the falls, must see but be prepared for lots of people.

Wed Feb 13 2019

Went with my brother in December! Quite cool and humid but got sunnier throughout the day. However, the flat rocks all along the trail were extremely slippery (fell a couple times). Be careful, lol! Great time though - will definitely visit the Petit Jean area again!

Sat Jan 26 2019

Sun Nov 11 2018

We did this trail during the fall and it was great. There are a lot of cool trails and views to see in Petit Jean State Park and this goes by many of them. I definitely wouldn't consider this trail hard, there were only a couple small sections that were difficult.

Mon Oct 22 2018

Will definitely be back to do this trail again

Sun Sep 30 2018

Awesome trail so much to see. Agree with the other positive posters.

Tue Jul 17 2018

We went on a hike here yesterday and it was wonderful. If you do the Rockefeller by itself, then it's an 8 miler. Adding the seven hollow trail is what makes it over 14 miles. During a 90° day, it's tough but well worth it, alot of shade. The sites were spectacular. If you dont wanna do a hike that long, you don't have to. This trail has 5-6 trails within it that range from 1-4 miles. Definitely a hidden gem between 2 national parks and worth the trip!

Sun May 06 2018

Harder trial, beautiful!

Mon Apr 09 2018

I really love this trail. Traveling from Hot Springs, it is close enough to make a full day out of it! I've completed this trail once, and I am going back Wednesday to do this trail plus some more! Also, this definitely is closer to 13 miles instead of the 8 stated above. The steepest parts are around the 4-5 mile marks!

Sat Dec 02 2017

Beutiful!! Took about 6 hours with Seven Hollows. I agree with the other comments counterclockwise is definitely the way to take the trail.

Sun Nov 26 2017

Great trail. Took about 4 hours, not including a short stop at Mather’s Lodge for a break. Take the trail counterclockwise for a less steep climb. Will definitely hit this one again.

Thu Sep 28 2017

Did this on Labor day with my son, we opted to do it with Seven Hallows and did it in 6 hrs. Amazing views! Once we were done we drove back to Mather lodge and enjoyed an outstanding dinner.

Mon Aug 07 2017

Was stunningly beautiful. Saw no one else on trail. Was fantastic

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