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

backpacking
5 days ago

Great trail for a day hike or overnight backpacking. This was our first backpacking trip and we had a blast. Great place to hammock camp right on the rock overlook. Trail is well marked and maintained. Both of us are beginners but are in good physical condition; it took us about 2.5 hours to reach the rock and about 1.5 hours to hike back down.

TRAIL IS NOT WELL MARKED. THE COMMENT THAT SAYS IT IS, IS VERY MISLEADING. Look for a SMALL, THIN BROWN SIGN, stuck into ground. IT IS EXTREMELY EASY TO MISS. Parking is not marked and is practically non-existent. There are like 3 individual spaces that you would believe are supposed to be used for parking. Basically, there's a dirt road you take to cut through the loop trail to a very short hike, to an incredibly scenic spot called Spy Rock. Fantastic view. Worth the drive. Only had around 40 minutes of time on the rock, because we spent 20 minutes searching for the trail. TRAIL IS EXACTLY WHERE GPS SAYS IT IS. JUST LOOK FOR BROWN SIGN. Since it takes only around 10 minutes to hike to the rock, it's perfect if you only have like an hour or so to actually be hiking and being outdoors in nature (not including travel time), but want to go somewhere very remote with a comparably better view than Yellow Rock. There is almost no difference in elevation. This is an insanely easy hike. Not good for children as the bluff is rather small. Could not tell if they were Eagles, Hawks, or Falcons but there was a couple large birds flying around in the horizon and it was gorgeous. Could be an excellent spot for birding if you get lucky like we did. I wish I had more time just to watch the birds majestically fly around the top of the vast landscape.

Was not paying close attention to the length of this trail when we hiked it. Was very long... but there are several waterfalls along the way. It really is worth the distance. I had a puppy and 2 7 year old kiddos who enjoyed it!

I'd rate this trail as moderate. The trail is narrow but slopes gradually and has only a few rugged areas. The trail is well-marked and -maintained. There are more sources of water on the east loop than the west, but I suspect that those will disappear during the dry season. There is no water source at the summit campsite, but the view is great. We arrived just in time to see the sun set.

One more thing. The trailhead is no longer at Redding campground. It is located on a small dirt road just east of the campground off the main highway. The new parking lot is located directly on the east loop. The spur leading to Redding campground still exists though. Make sure you don't accidently take it and end up in someone's campsite like we did.

Every time I hike a little part of the OHT, I think "what a lovely stretch of trail." This portion is no exception. The views as you head up the mountain just get more spectacular. On the Spring day when I visited, the wildflowers and butterflies were going like gangbusters. The old chimney and well at the homesite are neat, and worth the very short detour to check them out.
You do go UP, though fairly gradually. And then it's all downhill to get back to the trailhead!

Great little hike. Definitely not a hard trail. I would say moderate at best.

hiking
1 month ago

This trail is super scenic for being so short. Perfect trail for kids and dogs. Has one of the prettiest waterfalls I have seen.

easy to follow, well kept and all around great trail!

hiking
1 month ago

This is a fun hike, is mostly covered, and has a breathtaking overlook at the end! We went up on the west side trail and down on the east, though you could easily choose the opposite. There are camp sites along the east side. The east side also has bluff overlooks and waterfalls, but it is more rocky. If you’re starting on the west side, make sure to not turn prematurely when you’re getting close to the top - pass the road closed sign on the trail as the trail shoot off for spy rock is clearly marked with brown/yellow wooden signs. There’s great hammocking and two camp sites at top of spy rock! Might have to pay $3 for parking so bring cash.

hiking
2 months ago

Just visited today after several days of rain. It was muddy and a bit slippery on the rocks but worth the small trek to see the beautiful falls. It was 55 degrees and sunny so perfect hiking weather. Alot of people had the same idea.

hiking
3 months ago

This isn’t a well maintained trail. In fact, most of the way down to the creek is via dirt road. A foot path does split from the road about mid way down (blue tape) but I didn’t want to bushwhack. The inconvenience of getting there and having to work a bit at finding your way, however, is rewarded with scenic beauty. If you like a sense of solitude, minus a few beer cans strewn about, this adventure is for you. If you want an organized outing that is a bit more manicured and easy-to-follow, visit another trail. Truthfully, there are segments on the OHT and OT that are just as captivating without the hassle.

Great trail with great views it was marked somewhat well but definitely do the west loop and come down the east side. It's a nice loop but make sure you start early we started at 9 and got back at 5:15 and wish I would have had a little more time.

Beautiful hike in a secluded area!! Once we finally found our way to the trail, we loved every minute of it. There are amazing rock structures, a crystal clear creek, lots of pine trees and gorgeous views. We were not disappointed! The trail itself was not very difficult but it was tough to locate the trailhead. Once you get to the parking area described by others, you will walk down what looks like an atv trail and look for the trail to go off to the right (up a hill). We missed it but eventually found our way. If we had been looking at the app, we probably wouldn’t have missed it. The trail is not marked well at all but occasionally you will see blue tape tied to trees showing the general direction.

Absolutely LOVE this trail! I've taken my kids many times for a quick day hike. Such a beautiful trail and the lookout is so amazing! My go-to place when needing some mountain therapy!!

Quiet, secluded, and beautiful. Very well marked and maintained in the Winter. Don't miss the detour to the view at Spy Rock, one of the prettiest around. If you're going to park near the trailhead be sure to bring $3 and a pen to fill out your day use tag and envelope.

hiking
4 months ago

Great hike! I did the trail counter-clockwise from Shores Lake Campground and did the White Rock Rim Loop halfway through. I read someone's review earlier who said to do the loop clockwise, but I thought it might be better to do the steep part going uphill instead of down...less risk of injury if really steep boulders. However, after hiking it and seeing that the east approach to the mountain is not actually a "climb" and just a steep hike, I think clockwise is the way to go. It was nice to see the waterfalls on the west side of the loop on the way back, though...a reward for all the work put in going uphill. The whole creek is beautiful - I've never seen water that bluish color before!

Trail is well-marked, except that the overlapping part with the Ozark Highlands Trail does not have blue blazes. I got a bit nervous that I had missed the turnoff in the northwest part of the loop, but then I got to the intersection and it was very clearly marked with signs.

There's not much going on in the east side of the loop, but I really enjoyed the hike overall!

We did this hike Dec. 28th and it was chilly - but totally worth it! the trail is narrow the whole way and steep and rocky at some points. the trail was really well maintained and marked. all the downed trees and the pricier bushes were cut so we could pass through without any problems. the river along the way and the falls at the end were really amazing. We're not sure how long the whole hike was, but moving nonstop at a pretty fast pace we hiked back in about 80 minutes (we were trying to beat the sunset). if you're doing this hike in the winter leave plenty of time for exploration before dark, it may take you longer than anticipated!

My girlfriend and I backpacked this trail in October and we both enjoyed it thoroughly. The leaves were only beginning to change colors but still, much to see. Our goal was to camp on top of Spy Rock so we reached the top after only a few hours of hiking. We crossed several dry creeks and found nowhere to replenish our water. However, we prepared for this and packed plenty of water as most of Arkansas is dry during that time of year. The trail is moderately inclined going to the top of the mountain. I would not say it was difficult. Once at the top we found a few great primitive campsites. The view was beautiful. A must see. We enjoyed plenty of time to relax at the top (bring a hammock) before cooking supper and turning in for the night. Sunrise from the top was spectacular and we broke camp after saying goodbye to another backpacker who also camped at the top. I can't remember if we hiked this loop clockwise or counterclockwise but we did see a few trickling waterfalls on our hike out. This was a short overnight trip but left us plenty of time to get done with Sunday chores once we were back home. I certainly recommend this hike.

Was a good trail. West loop had a lot more to see then the east loop. At 36, and one who does not exercise more then a walk/run for 2-3 miles twice a week, this trail was more then I should have taken on for a day hike. We camped at white rock, went down the west loop, did the full loop and came up the east side. By mile 8/9 I was definitely hurting —- just in time to start the ascent. We started at 8am and made it back by 4:45, just as the sun was beginning To go down. Hiked the week before thanksgiving. Trail was easy to find and well marked. Most streams were dry.

Did this yesterday. Great trail.

The trailhead has been moved from the Redding campground to a little parking area 1/4 mile further down the highway. All the signage at the new trailhead is missing so it was a total guess where to go but we got it right. From the parking lot, follow the trail that starts out the back of the parking lot and turns right toward Redding campground. It will take you to the intersection of the old trail beginning and the west and east loops, We met another hiker on the trail that said the old trailhead at Redding was just across from the restrooms.

The trail spends a good amount of miles along bluffs, teasing you with views of the valley through bare trees. Sometimes the trail is narrow and the bluff drop off very severe, but nothing too scary. The trail meanders through both deciduous and pine forest but stays primarily in the woods. At this time of year, the leaves are deep enough to obscure ankle rolling rocks, so be careful and you might want to opt for ankle high boots for support. The creeks were all dry but some rock formations on the east loop surely make some awesome waterfalls after a rain.

Spy Rock is a nice view for a lunch break. Plenty of big rocks to sit on while you enjoy the view. Looks like enough space for 2 campsites at Spy Rock, would make a great side trail for someone backpacking the OHT.

rock climbing
5 months ago

awesome area. tons of rock and creek to explore!

Abundant trails that can be challenging for a novice but skilled riders have no problems. Absolute blast to ride and beautiful views!! Not quite Colorado but also not quite 16 hour drive either! Lots of UTV owners whose skill is only that they bought a caged offroad vehicle but don’t really know what they r doing. Be aware!!!

This trail was great! Closer to the peak of the mountain the difficulty level would be “hard”. Would strongly recommend going up East side and then coming down the West.

It was a decent outing. All the trees were still changing colors so it was pretty. However, some people were camping up on Spy Rock which just made that part non-enjoyable and quick. I would like to come back in the raining season and see the waterfall.

backpacking
6 months ago

I went August and half the trail was covered in spiders and horse flies made it worse. The trail was pretty though.

hiking
7 months ago

Great short hike. Trail kind of disappears after about 0.25 miles but not overgrown at all. Just follow what appears to be a large mostly dry creek bed with large boulders and u will find Main falls. Small falls en route too. Very pretty and easy hike.

backpacking
7 months ago

New trail head is located NE of the parking lot of the trail head. Do not take the trail head located in the new trail head parking lot

Hike feels really long, when I tracked our distance straight back it was actually about 3.5 miles so the hike feels longer than it says because it's closer to 7 miles.

Negatives: the trail wasn't really well kept in some places, to the point we were not a 100% sure we were still on the trail. We actually said we should have brought a machete to clear some of the path.

Positives: there are some fairly challenging inclines and declines, cliffs, a few water features, and probably some wildlife (we were kinda noisy so didn't see anything but spiders). We didn't leave with any ticks and or other bugs. The worst we got was some whips and slashed from the over grown areas which did include thorns but fortunately nothing poisonous.

hiking
9 months ago

Did this as a day hike in Late July. Makes for a long day hike but it's doable and it might be more fun on a day where the air isn't completely saturated. This trail definitely needs some TLC as we had to do some bushwhacking and climb through/over many blow downs.

Nice little walk, the waterfalls were running good after the short thunderstorms the day before.

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