7 Arkansas State Parks With The Most Breathtaking Autumn Color

From the scenic river bluffs in the Ozark Mountains to the lush forests of the West Gulf Coastal Plain, Arkansas puts on a spectacular display of autumn color unlike anywhere else in the country.

Scarlet oaks, maples, sweetgums, and hickories, have already begun to put on a jaw-dropping display of gold, orange, and crimson foliage. Witness some of the most beautiful fall color this year while exploring these state parks.

Use this interactive map to find out when and where the leaves are changing all across the country.

Petit Jean State Park


Petit Jean State Park is an Arkansas icon, a state natural and historic treasure that has welcomed travelers over the decades. The natural beauty and ancient geology of legendary Petit Jean Mountain inspired the creation of Arkansas’s first state park, and with it our state park system.

Hiking trails lead through forestscanyonsmeadows, and along streams and mountainside. See where nature over time formed sheer bluffs, Cedar Falls, and the Seven Hollows, such distinctive features as Bear Cave, the Grotto, and the Natural Bridge, and other formations sculpted geometrically by nature called Turtle Rocks and Carpet Rocks.

Mount Magazine State Park


Mount Magazine State Park is on the state’s tallest mountain, the 2,753-foot Mount Magazine. Sweeping vistas of broad river valleysdeep canyons, and distant mountains welcome outdoor enthusiasts to Arkansas’s highest point.

The park is a place to enjoy hikingsightseeing, exploring the mountain and nature study. It’s also a destination for outdoor sports and extreme adventure enthusiasts that offers rock climbingrappellinghang glidingmountain bikinghorseback ridingbackpacking, and ATV adventure. An ATV guide service is available.

Mount Magazine is the state park system’s most dramatic location for technical rock climbing. The park also offers overlooks, hiking trails, a picnic area with restrooms, pavilion, and visitor center with an interactive exhibit gallery and gift shop. Park interpreters lead a variety of programs that highlight the mountain’s natural diversity and unique species.

Website: http://www.mountmagazinestatepark.com/

Queen Wilhelmina State Park


A spectacular mountaintop setting. Breathtaking panoramic mountain scenery. Royal hospitality. Queen Wilhelmina State Park is this, and more. The park’s crowning attraction is its renowned hostelry, a historic lodging tradition born in 1898 with the original “Castle in the Sky” resort that graced this same lofty locale high above the Ouachita Mountains over 100 years ago.

Withrow Springs State Park


In the heart of the Ozark Mountains, nestled in a narrow valley cradled by the limestone bluffs of the War Eagle Creek, Withrow Springs State Park is a peaceful setting for camping, hiking, and quiet river floats. The namesake of this park, Withrow Springs, was named for Richard Withrow, a settler who established this area’s first grist mill. The spring’s clear, cold waters gush from a cave at the foot of a bluff near the park swimming pool.

The park offers a put-in point to the waters of the War Eagle, a north flowing stream usually floatable from march to mid-June, depending on rainfall. Floating and angling for catfish, bream, perch, and bass in this stream offers relaxation at its best. Rental canoes and shuttle service are available from the park.

Website: https://www.arkansasstateparks.com//park-finder/park.aspx?id=15

Pinnacle Mountain State Park


Pinnacle Mountain is a day-use park dedicated to environmental education, outdoor recreation, and preservation. Located just west of Little Rock, this natural environment of 2,356 acres was set aside in 1977 as Arkansas’s first state park adjoining a major metropolitan area.

The state park’s dominant natural feature is Pinnacle Mountain, which rises more than a thousand feet above the Arkansas River Valley. The mountain’s cone-shaped peak has long been a central Arkansas landmark and attraction for outdoor enthusiasts. Two of the park’s hiking trails lead hikers to the mountain’s beautiful summit.

Website: https://www.arkansasstateparks.com/pinnaclemountain/

Lake Ouachita State Park


Surrounded by the Ouachita National Forest, Lake Ouachita is known for its scenic natural beauty and the clarity of its waters. These pristine waters form the largest man-made lake within Arkansas’s borders. Named one of the cleanest lakes in America, 40,000-acre Lake Ouachita is a water sports mecca for swimmingskiingscuba divingboating, and fishing. Angling for bream, crappie, catfish, stripers, and largemouth bass can be enjoyed in open waters or quiet coves along the lake’s 975 miles of shoreline.

Located just a short drive from the spa city of Hot Springs on the lake’s eastern shore, Lake Ouachita State Park is your gateway to this popular water sports lake.

Devils Den State Park


This valley in the renowned Ozark Mountains—ancient sedimentary mountains famous for their natural beauty and lush oak-hickory forest—offers a breathtaking display of fall color every year.

Miles of hiking and multiple use trails wind through Devil’s Den and the surrounding Ozark National Forest. Caves, crevices, and bluff overlooks can be explored here. Take a wet-water day hike up Lee Creek, or trek the 15-mile-long Butterfield Hiking Trail. This trail from the park through the Ozark National Forest leads backpackers deep into the hills and hollows of the rugged scenic Ozarks.

Seventeen fully-equipped cabins featuring kitchens and fireplaces are nestled in the natural beauty of this park. These cabins are available throughout the year. Each cabin has a wood-burning fireplace that is available seasonally. Book a stay at one of these cabins today for the ultimate escape from the city.

Website: https://www.arkansasstateparks.com/devilsden/

These Dreamy Road Trips Go Through The Best Fall Foliage In All Of Arkansas

In the Midwest, deciduous trees put on a spectacular display of color. Leaf viewing is one of the easiest (and least expensive) ways to experience America’s awe-inspiring natural beauty. Take a weekend day trip and explore some of the country’s most beautiful autumn foliage on these dreamy road trips.

Scenic 7: Among the Most Scenic Drives in America

Drive Scenic Byway 7 in Arkansas, the state’s first state-designated scenic byway, and travel through four of the state’s varied geographical regions.

Arguably one of the most scenic drives in America, the route begins on the south end within the West Gulf Coastal Plain, a region that saw an oil boom beginning in 1921 near El Dorado. It continues to Camden and on to Arkadelphia through rolling terrain with dense pine forests and stream valleys with bottomland hardwood forests. Near Arkadelphia, the route enters the Ouachita Mountains, famous for their quartz crystals, and passes by DeGray Lake, home of Arkansas’s only resort state park. At Hot Springs, the byway journeys through the historic downtown and immediately in front of the famed Bathhouse Row of Hot Springs National Park. Continuing though the forested Ouachitas, it passes through the Ouachita National Forest and by Lake Nimrod, then reaches Russellville and crosses the more level terrain of the Arkansas River Valley.

Leaving the valley, Scenic 7 ascends into the Ozark Mountains, famous for fall foliage, and the Ozark National Forest, and passes through the mountain town of Jasper along the Buffalo National River on its way to Harrison.

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On the left is the Northern Route of the trip, and to the right is the Southern Route.

Scenic 7 can also be connected to two other Arkansas scenic byways: the West-Northwest Scenic Byway (it intersects in Ola) and the Ozark Highlands Scenic Byway (at Jasper take Arkansas State Highway 74 to Ponca, then 43 to the top of the route).

Boston Mountains Scenic Loop/U.S. Highway 71 and Interstate 49

Two very different roads crossing the highest part of the Ozark Mountains combine to make the Boston Mountains Scenic Loop one of The Natural State’s most interesting driving tours and most scenic motorcycle rides.

Both routes offer impressive mountain vistas. I-49 offers a good look at the countryside while scaling high-span bridges and the state’s only highway tunnel; the Boston Loop on U.S. 71 offers many locations to pull off the road and commune with the mountains. There are also plenty of opportunities along the route to go hiking in the Ozarks.

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Mount Magazine Scenic Byway

From Havana, the Arkansas State Highway 309 / Mount Magazine Scenic Byway quickly begins its ascent through the forests on the slopes of Mount Magazine, the highest peak in Arkansas at 2,753 feet.

At the top you’ll find Mount Magazine State Park, which includes a full service lodge, conference center, restaurant, indoor pool, and hot tub, plus fully-equipped cabins with fireplaces and hot tubs on the deck overlooking the river valley. Park roads lead to overlooks with expansive views of Blue Mountain Lake and the Ouachita Mountains to the south and of the Arkansas River Valley and the Ozark Mountains to the north. A park trail provides access to the state’s high point.

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West-Northwest Scenic Byway

The West-Northwest Scenic Byway was designated a state scenic byway in 2005 and encompasses 261 miles of interconnected highways. The route is unique in the fact that it travels through the Ouachita Mountains, the only mountain range in North America that stretches from east to west, and also that it travels both north-south and east-west in the southwest corner of the state.

Starting in Ola, travel Arkansas State Highway 10 west. Along this section you’ll go through the towns of Danville, Havana, Waveland, Magazine, Booneville and Greenwood. To the south is the Ouachita National Forest, and the Ozark National Forest is north of the route. To continue into Oklahoma from Greenwood, take the Highway 10 exit (toward Hackett, “Old Hackett Road”) which will feed out onto Highway 10 (or Excelsior Road). Follow to the Oklahoma border. Watch out for the right turn in Hackett! Arkansas State Highway 10 turns into Oklahoma State Highway 120.

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 Crowley’s Ridge Parkway National Scenic Byway

Crowley’s Ridge Parkway National Scenic Byway is the first National Scenic Byway in the state and roughly runs the length of its namesake – Crowley’s Ridge. It begins in the northeast corner at St. Francis, winding its way alongside the ridge through some of the most fertile areas of Arkansas,to its southern-most terminus at West Helena.

Eastern Arkansas lies within the nation’s largest alluvial plain, a vast flatland leveled over eons by the erosive floods, depositions of silt and course changes of the Mississippi River and its tributaries.

Contained within the Delta’s level expanse, Crowley’s Ridge rises as much as 200 feet above the surrounding terrain and stretches from Malden, Missouri to Helena, Arkansas. It was formed when the ancestral Mississippi and Ohio rivers eroded away the land on each side and deposits of wind-blown soils added height to the remnant ridge. A magnet for human settlement, the ridge was named after Benjamin Crowley, who moved there in 1800 to escape flooding in the Delta lowlands.

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Talimena National Scenic Byway

From Mena, the Talimena Scenic Drive/Arkansas State Highway 88 Scenic Byway travels northwest and quickly enters the Ouachita National Forest, climbing Rich Mountain, Arkansas’s second highest peak at 2,681 feet, and passing through Queen Wilhelmina State Park on its way to the Oklahoma border 18 miles to the west. The drive then continues along the Rich and Winding Stair mountains all the way to Talihina, OK. The route offers mountain vistas unsurpassed in mid-America of forested peaks and valleys, lakes and streams. The drive is especially picturesque when the surrounding mountains are clad in spring and autumn foliage and when it sits above clouds and fog in the lower valleys.

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5 Charming Pumpkin Patches In Missouri You Have To Visit This Autumn

Soon the forests will begin to transform and amber leaves will blanket the countryside.

Spend a crisp autumn day outside, hand-pick your favorite pumpkins, get lost in a corn maze, snack on a cider donut, or gather apples from a nearby orchard.

These beautiful farms provide an abundance of family-friendly activities to keep you busy, active, and well-fed all day. Whether you’re looking to stock up on decorative gourds or provide the kids with a fun-filled and fall-themed day, these charming farms in Missouri are the perfect fall destination.

Faulkner’s Ranch


This scenic ranch has been in operation for over 60 years, and it’s the perfect place to enjoy the picturesque autumnal backdrops and quaint countryside this October.

Bring your family – the kids will enjoy the playgroundpony ridesbounce houseshay ridesziplinepetting zootrain rides, games, and much more! Also, be sure to try their specialty fresh baked Pumpkin Spice Donuts and other fall treats.

For more information and pricing, visit their website

Exeters Corn Maze


This well-loved farm is one of the most popular fall destinations in the Ozarks.

With over 40 acres of pumpkins, an 8 acre corn maze, ziplines, hot air balloon rides, hay rides, petting zoo, face painting, movie room, paintball arena, pumpkin and corn canons, train rides, swings, hay tunnels, fire-pits, along with lots of farm-fresh treats to eat, this unique farm is an all-in-one destination for all ages!

For more information and pricing, visit their website

fun farm pumpkins

Fun Farm Pumpkin Patch


Fun Farm Pumpkin Patch has an impressive array of activities for all ages including a corn maze, hay rides, and pumpkin patch.

Kids will enjoy the playgroundcarousel, barnyard and petting zoohay rides, observation beehive, train rides, tricycle track, and many other activities.

For more information on pricing and admission fees, visit their website

Shop for more than just pumpkins at this farm and discover thousands of autumn flowers ready to be planted in your garden.

The farm also has a rabbit ranch and other barnyard animals including sheep, miniature horses, goats, miniature donkeys, bottle-fed calves, pigs, and chickens.

Every year, the corn fields are cut into intricate and amazing designs!

You and your family can get lost between the giant stalks of corn and explore as much of the maze as you desire.

Rutledge-Wilson Farm Community Park


In the foothills of the Boston Mountains, this 207 acre farm offers a superlative combination of pumpkins, festivities, and treats to sample. A gift shop serves up autumn treats, which are a perfect snack while exploring the many activities throughout the farm.

Admission is free and explore the nearby fishing pond, gardens, playground, and scenic walking trail that winds throughout the park.

For more information on pricing and hours, click here

This charming farm has a small pumpkin patch, corn maze, and a barn with dozens of friendly farm animals.

The 207-acre park was created by the Springfield-Greene County Park Board to celebrate the rich agricultural heritage of the area.

Centennial Farms


This historic treasure has been in operation for nearly 200 years, and it’s the perfect place for fruit picking, picnicking, and sightseeing in the historic city of Augusta, Missouri. Centennial Farms offers a variety of applespumpkins, and gourds in the fall, as well as fresh flowers to transform your home for the autumn equinox.