Monday, February 24, 2014

Lake Sequoyah - Fayetteville

I covered Lake Sequoyah awhile ago, but after visiting several more times and learning about even more trails, I wanted to write a new piece focusing on the lake.  I'm working on a new book project, so I'm going to start keeping trail descriptions to a minimum here.  The trails here are great, underused, and include lots of interesting features.  On the map below, the blue trail is the only one I've actually hiked (and I've done it four times now!). The orange trails represent approximate locations of other trails at the park and I've been told there is a dense network of trails around the dam at the north end of the lake.  If you are into exploring off-trail, remember that everything shown in green on the map is a city park and you can explore all of it.

Photos of the lake and trails at:

View Lake Sequoyah Trails in a larger map

Saturday, February 8, 2014

Mt. Kessler / Regional Park News

Update 7/19/2014:  The new parking area and trailhead is now open.  Shown on the map below, the parking lot is located at the Regional Park on WC-200, which is a gravel road just off of Cato Springs, west of I-49.  From the trailhead, a new ~10' mowed path runs 1.3 miles up to the existing Mt. Kessler trail system.  The new section of trail varies from flat to moderately steep and from open/shrubby grassland to densely forested.  There are large blackberry patches along the trail; hopefully the city will mow some paths to larger ones located a bit off the trail.

Update 2/18/14: The City voted to approve the purchase of 300+ acres around Mt. Kessler!

Original Post:
In the near future the City of Fayetteville will likely vote to approve the purchase of 300+ acres of land around Mt. Kessler and the planned Regional Park. This purchase will be made possible by $1.5 million in matching funds from the Walton Family Foundation. This is great news as it helps guarantee that Mt. Kessler will be preserved as greenspace. The property being purchased will connect Mt. Kessler Greenways to the Regional Park, creating a much larger park with lots of potential for mountain biking and hiking trails. The map below shows the existing Mt. Kessler Trails in blue. The property being purchased along with the existing Regional Park is roughly outlined in green. As you can see much of Mt. Kessler remains in private hands.  It would be great if the University or City of Fayetteville could purchase the rest of the open space on and around the mountain since it has such great educational and recreational potential.