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  1. #1
    Rohloff
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    Best Camp/Ride in Arkansas

    I'm heading to Arkansas for about 6 days before Thanksgiving where I'll be in far East Oklahoma (Tahlequah). I'll be bringing my bike and a small travel trailer. I'm pretty flexible but would like to find the best place to camp and ride in Central to Western Arkansas. Any ideas?

  2. #2
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    Tompkins Bend COE campground, SW end of Lake Ouachita. Vista Trail at the front gate, Womble Trail a very short drive to the west and Cedar Glades in Hot Springs to the east. The pies at Shangri La are supposed to be excellent according to the trail workers who maintain the Vista Trail.

    There is another Corp campground just across the bay called Denby Point or something like that. This is actually my favorite COE campground. Look on the NW section over the water.

    If you want primitive look at the float camps just off the Womble Trail. One of these may be my next tent adventure with my boys.

    This is the best time of year to ride any of those trails.
    FYI on the 20th is the Attila the Hun race at Cedar Glades.

  3. #3
    Rohloff
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    Thanks for the info. I actually staid in a cabin in that area a few years ago. I did a little bit of biking on the Vista Trail and drove around scouting for a camp site. I think I checked out Tompkins, but it could have been Denby or Joblin. Either way, the area was nice and I do like the idea of having a trail right there. Tompkins seems like a real good place

    I had also seen the Attila the Hun Race and Cedar Glades. I'm not a racer but I may go check out the event and talk to a few people.

  4. #4
    Dirty South Underdog
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    Syllamo Trails- camp at Blanchard Springs
    Brickhouse Blog (most known unknown)

    Just Riding Along- best internet radio show on Mountain Bike Radio

  5. #5
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    Lake leatherwood outside eureka is nice. I bike 2 miles in to a place called the point. Nice!

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by bsdc View Post
    I'm heading to Arkansas for about 6 days before Thanksgiving where I'll be in far East Oklahoma (Tahlequah). I'll be bringing my bike and a small travel trailer. I'm pretty flexible but would like to find the best place to camp and ride in Central to Western Arkansas. Any ideas?
    Tompkins Bend, I believe, would be your best choice. I spent a week there last year and never got tired riding LOViT. Trail access is right there at the campground and it's a 11 mile loop by including a mile of hyway between Joplin and Denby Point. If you want to test your legs and lungs the ride to Joplin and then over and down Hickorynut will do that. This year the trail has been extended to about 5 miles past Crystal Springs and takes you over a couple more mountains.

    The biggest disappointment was the 270 - Fishing Village section of the Womble. It was a ride through the woods, no flow, and one climb.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Best Camp/Ride in Arkansas-img_0812.jpg  

    Best Camp/Ride in Arkansas-img_0863.jpg  

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  7. #7
    Rohloff
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    Thanks for the info. All those places are on my list. I'll probably have time to hit 2 or 3 of them. Devil's Den State Park was recommended. Any thoughts?

  8. #8
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    DD is OK. The park is nice, but I like the trails at Lake Leatherwood better.

    Lake Leatherwood Fees - The Eureka Springs Parks and Recreation Commission

    Kev

  9. #9
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    IF you can swing it definitely try to make Iron Mountain/Lake De Gray, in Arkadelphia. That is a really good ride. I am probably heading there in the morning!!! There are campsites on the lake and a lodge.

  10. #10
    Life is Go0d!
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    Lake Leatherwood at Eureka Springs
    The only regrets in life, are the risks you didn't take.

  11. #11
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    I hope you got some good riding in before all the rain has set in.

  12. #12
    Rohloff
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    Quote Originally Posted by FlynG View Post
    I hope you got some good riding in before all the rain has set in.
    Nope. Rolled in Sunday night for the first round of storms, scouted things out and relaxed Monday. Second round of storms Monday night. I couldn't stand it anymore and decided to go riding today. Just got back.

    Started at the Hwy 298 parking lot. Went East about 2.5 miles before I ran into a creek that would have left me with a wet shammy. The whole way was pretty sloppy, but ridable, if you don't mind your feet getting wet.

    After that I went West to Mount Mauldin. That was a much better way to go. Still got wet feet but not as bad.

    I could have gone further but I was ready to get back. I think I got in about 15 miles in about 3 hours. It was real slow going. A lot of the trail was essentially wet weather creeks because there had been so much rain. Taking things too fast would put up a cold wet rooster tail up your back side.

    I ran into a hunter sitting in a folding chair in the middle of the Womble trail. There's a long straight, relatively wide section at the base of Mount Mauldin. I guess he thought it would make a good firing line. He seemed unaware that it was a trail. Kind of scary.

    All in all, I really had a good time. I was prepared to be unimpressed. I really like chunky technical riding. The thought of strolling down smooth trails through the woods didn't excite me. It turned out to be a lot more than that. Not real technical, but still a fun adventure. I may be able to get out tomorrow before heading to see family in Oklahoma. If not, I look forward to coming out again.

    For my next trip, I want to run the full length of the trail ... weather permitting. Maybe even circumvent the route of the Ouchita Challenge. So whens the best time to ride this area?

  13. #13
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    Fall through Spring is the best time, shoot thene a note and ask about the OC lite route. That sounds like what you are looking for.

  14. #14
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    Check out Hot Springs.

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