I spent the middle part of Spring Break travelling in Arkansas, prompting a colleague at work to send me this clip of The Happy Wanderer and I’ll add The Arkansas Traveller to the mix, since I revisited scenic spots near Russellville which I’d visited in March and June of 2010.
The first day I visited Pedestal Rocks and King’s Bluff, which had been rainy hikes last June, but were dry and defoliated this time. Along the way I stopped at Haw Creek Falls to enjoy the pretty scene. On this visit to Pedestal Rocks the dry conditions allowed me to capture self-portraits both atop and at the base of the fascinating pedestal-in-the-making, providing some scale to the formation, with a separated pedestal near by. On the adjoining King’s Bluff trail I saw another small pedestal and enjoyed the falls. Fallen trees sported some interesting fungi.
The next day I drove up to Petit Jean Mountain to enjoy the Palisades Overlook and walked about the Bear Cave area with its rocks and trees and carved overhangs. A year ago I enjoyed the Cedar Creek Trail with its side streams, iron bluff, pedestrian bridges, and falls. On the Rock House Cave trail I posed by the big boulders and visited the cave, the turtle rocks, and passed several wet bluffs.
I also returned to the Cedar Falls Overlook, which was as impressive as ever, and laid my hand on the carpet rocks for scale. Driving over to Red Bluff Drive, I visited the CCC Overlook and posed on its towering cliff. The day ended with me down at the Slush Puppy stand near the CCC monuments, shooting the gorgeous reflection of Davies Bridge, and then I drove over to Stout’s Point to view the Arkansas River and the glow of the setting sun on the chimney at the former YMCA building.
On the final day I drove up Mount Nebo to hike the Summit Park trail and the prettier half of the Rim Trail, culminating at Sunrise Point and yet another self-portrait on top of the world. I decided to spend the late afternoon hiking down to Cedar Falls back at Petit Jean, with flowers alongside the trail and the immense bowl of the falls at its terminus. The golden hour found me again at Roosevelt Lake and its sentinel trees, and I revisited the Palisades for a lovely sunset.
Much of the hiking was vertical on this trip, with only 15 miles or so of horizontal travel over the three days. It was nice to revisit these familiar spots, but I look forward to novel experiences in the coming months. Before Spring Break is out I need to go shopping, since I’ve worn out my hiking boots and trekking poles. Thank goodness I’m more resilient.