Day Trips and Area Activities

photo of kayakers

Swimming, picnicking, canoeing, hiking, fishing, bicycling, museums, and art galleries are within a two-hour drive from the park. Although we have no rivers or streams in the park, flowing water is just a short drive away.

Area Information

Swimming & Picnicking
Contact the Ouachita National Forest in Hodgen, Oklahoma at:  918-653-2991.

  • Mill Creek, Oklahoma (Hwy 270)
  • Cedar Lake, Oklahoma (Hwy 59/270)


Fishing, Swimming, Camping & Picnicking

Albert Pike Recreation Area, Langley, Arkansas (day-use only)-- Contact the Ouachita National Forest in Glenwood, Arkansas at:  870-321-5202

Winding Stair Mountain, Oklahoma (Hwy. 1) -- Contact the Ouachita National Forest in Hodgen, Oklahoma at:  918-653-2991

Hiking
Contact the Ouachita National Forest in Hodgen, Oklahoma at:  918-653-2991

Kerr Nature Center
Contact the Ouachita National Forest in Hodgen, Oklahoma at:  918-653-2991

Contact the Ouachita National Forest in Mena, Arkansas at:  479-394-2382

  • Earthquake Ridge Trail
  • Shady Lake Recreation Area
  • Caney Creek Wilderness Area
  • Ouachita Trail
  • Blackfork Wilderness Trail

Bicycling

  • Earthquake Ridge Trail - 6.8 miles of singletrack. A map is available on the National Forest website.
  • Talimena Highway - The Talimena National Scenic Byway is a long-time favorite for road cyclists because of its tough climbs, exhilarating downhills, and beautiful overlooks that accentuate the ride.

Canoeing

  • Cossatot River State Park-Natural Area (between Hwy 246E and Hwy 4)

Arkansas State Parks

Oklahoma State Parks

  • Lake Wister
  • Cedar Lake
  • Talihina
  • Beaver Bend

 

U.S. Forest Service (Arkansas)

Contact the Ouachita National Forest at Mena, Arkansas at:  479-394 2382.

  • Albert Pike
  • Shady Lake
  • Little Missouri Falls
  • Mill Creek
  • Bard Springs

 

U.S. Forest Service (Oklahoma)

Contact the Ouachita National Forest in Hodgen, Oklahoma at:  918-653-2991. 

  • Cedar Lake
  • Billy Creek
  • Winding Stairs 

Boating

  • DeGray Lake
  • Lake Greeson
  • Lake Catherine
  • Lake Hamilton
  • Gillham Lake
  • Lake Ouachita
  • Broken Bow Lake

Museums

  • Gary Blythe's Museum (Waldron, Arkansas)
  • Kerr Research Center (Poteau, Oklahoma)
  • Peter Conser House (Hodgen, Oklahoma)
  • Fort Smith National Park Museum and Judge Parker's Courtroom (Fort Smith, Arkansas)
  • Mid-America Museum (Hot Springs, Arkansas)
  • Jot-Em-Down Store (Pine Ridge, Arkansas)
  • Kansas City/Southern Historical Railroad Museum (Mena, Arkansas)
  • Heritage of the Forest Museum (Beaver Bend State Park, Oklahoma)

Art Galleries

  • Fort Smith Art Center (Fort Smith, Arkansas)
  • Hot Springs Fine Arts Center (Hot Springs, Arkansas)
  • Southwest Art Gallery (Mena, Arkansas)

Area Activities

Lum and Abner Festival is held the first weekend in June in Mena, Arkansas.

Vandervoort Picnic is an old fashioned 4th of July in Vandervoort, Arkansas, at the picnic grounds.

Queen Wilhelmina Rod Run held at the Queen Wilhelmina State Park is an antique car show held the third weekend of August. Hamfest is held the weekend following Labor Day Weekend.

The Polk County Fair is the last week in August each year.

A full list of activities are available by calling the Mena A&P Commission at 479- 394-8355 or visit the Commission's website www.visitMena.com.