Arkansas Hiking, Nature December 27, 2017
Start Your Year On The Right Foot With These 11 Arkansas First Day Hikes
State parks all around Arkansas are kicking off 2018 with First Day Hikes. Created by America’s State Parks, this initiative is an invite to hikers of all skill levels to connect with nature and start the year off on the right foot. Begin the year with an easily achievable resolution by taking part of a nearby First Day Hike.
Hikes will begin at 10 a.m. unless otherwise noted.
1. Moro Bay State Park - Jersey
Moro Bay's first hike will be on their Deer Run Trail. The hike will be an easy 3/8 of a mile that welcomes all levels. You can also fish the Ouachita River or visit the park's historic tugboat and barge exhibit.
2. Village Creek State Park - Wynne
Village Creek will have two first day hikes. At 9 a.m., join friends for a 2.6-mile hike beginning at the boat launch. A 1.5-mile hike around the Lake Austell Trail will also be offered at 2 p.m.
3. Mount Magazine State Park - Paris
Start your year at the top of the world by joining hikers to the peak of Mount Magazine. The park is also hosting a winter vista walk at 3 p.m. for a breathtaking view from the cliff ledge.
4. Queen Wilhelmina State Park - Mena
Take the mile long Lover's Leap Trail for Queen Wilhelmina's first day hike. Warm up by the fire and enjoy coffee or hot chocolate afterwards.
5. Lake Fort Smith State Park - Mountainburg
Join others on the Shepherd Springs Loop and part of the Ozark Highlands Trail for a moderately strenuous 4-mile hike. Be sure to check out the visitors center for interactive exhibits and gallery.
6. Lake Dardanelle State Park -Russellville
Starting at 2 p.m., hikers can take a relaxed walk around the Meadow Brook Trail. Have a chance to spot wildlife along the way or at the visitor center's aquatic exhibit.
7. Petit Jean State Park - Morrilton
Petit Jean State Park has multiple chances to take a first day hike. Join them at 8:30 a.m. for the 1/2-mile Bear Cave area, 11:15 a.m. and 3 p.m. for the 1/4-mile Cedar Falls overlook, or at 1:30 p.m. for a 1/4-mile around the Rock House Cave.
8. Lake Ouachita State Park - Mountain Pine
Pick your length along the Caddo Bend Trail and conquer a 1, 3, or 4-mile hike. The park will provide drinks, snacks, and even a door prize around a bonfire. Festivities will begin at 9 a.m.
9. Davidsonville Historic State Park - Pocahontas
This first day hike will tour the woods and wetlands around the area on an easy 1.8-mile trail. The guided hike will begin at 1 p.m. and will finished with hot cider around the visitor center's fireplace. Bring your leashed pet to keep you motivated!
10. Bull Shoals-White River State Park - Bull Shoals
The first day hike at Bull Shoals will be a moderately strenuous Big Bluff Trail, a 1.75-mile loop. The hike is expected to be about two hours long. While you're there you can take advantage of the premier fishing spot for anglers or plan a chilly camping trip.
11. Prairie Grove Battlefield State - Prairie Grove
The first day hikes at Prairie Grove Battlefield State Park will begin at 11 a.m. and 2 p.m. The park is also hosting the 125-Mile Challenge. Beginning on the first, hikers can join the park interpreters to tackle 125 miles over the course of 2018. The march was originally taken by Union General Herron's men in three days to reach the Battle of Prairie Grove.
For more details, you can check out
Arkansas’ State Park’s official website.
You can use #firstdayhikes to take part of this initiative on social media. Use #arkansasonly for a chance for your photo to be featured as well!
What are your resolutions for 2018? Share your goals with us in the comments below!