Thursday, September 5, 2013

Petit Jean - State Park of the Week #1

The State Park of the Week is a new feature I will be trying out as I attempt to get back into book writing mode.  Since Petit Jean has long been my favorite state park, I decided to start with it.

Petit Jean State Park
Location: 20 miles west of Morrilton and Perryville atop Petit Jean Mountain along AR-154
Area: 3,471 ac.
Major Attractions: Cedar Falls, Huge Bluffs, Caves, Turtle Rocks, Incredible Views, Nice Lodge and Cabins, Lots of Campsites
Miles of Trail:  20+
My Favorite Part: Seven Hollows Trail
Getting There: From Central Arkansas either take I-40 to Morrilton, then AR-9 south, and AR-154 west; or for a more scenic route (and maybe faster from West Little Rock) take Hwy-10 west, AR-324 N, AR-155 N, and AR-154 E.

Petit Jean is a great place to visit year-round, but fall is probably the best since the views are spectacular, the waterfalls could be flowing, and you can take advantage of the cool temps to go camping, have a campfire, or enjoy the warmth of the fireplaces in the lodge.  The park has lots of great trails covering a range of difficulties.  The newest trail, the 1.75 mi. CCC Hike & Bike Trail, is paved and relatively flat.  The Cedar Falls Trail is a bit tougher since it is rocky in places and has lots of elevation change, while the Boy Scout Trail is probably the most strenuous coming in at 12 miles and overlapping many of the other trails in the park.

Natural Bridge Petit Jean State Park Seven Hollows Trail Hike Arkansas by Johnnie Chamberlin
Natural Bridge (or arch) on Seven Hollows Trail

Petit Jean State Park Trail Cedar Falls
Cedar Falls in Winter

Cedar Falls Petit Jean State Park Hike Overlook Arkansas by Johnnie Chamberlin
Cedar Falls Overlook
Interesting Rock Features

Petit Jean State Park Overlook Scout, Arkansas
View of Arkansas River Valley from Petit Jean Gravesite
Petit Jean State Park Trail Map

Here is my less formal description of the park and its amazing features.

No comments:

Post a Comment